Winthrop University: ONCA - Award Listings - Awards for International Research, Travel, Foreign Service, and Study Abroad
Contact Information
222B Dinkins Hall
Rock Hill, SC 29733, USA
803/323-3910 (fax)

Office of Nationally Competitive Awards (ONCA)

Award Listings

Study Abroad, Language Training or Teaching Abroad

Please note: Most nationally competitive study abroad awards require undergraduate applicants to complete one year of college and to apply for study abroad programs approved by their home institutions. If you are interested in applying for a national study abroad award, please prepare for your ONCA advising appointment by following these steps:

  1. Check out the Steps to Study Abroad to learn how Winthrop's Study Abroad Office can help you start planning your study abroad experience.
  2. Attend a group advising session offered by the Study Abroad Office to learn about program options and locations
  3. Once you have a study abroad program/location in mind, identify national awards that interest you.
  4. Submit the ONCA Student Information Form to receive instructions for booking an ONCA advising appointment.

Planning ahead is important for all national award competitions, but study abroad includes the additional work of selecting and applying for a WU-approved study abroad program. Giving yourself at least one semester to consider study abroad programs and awards before applying can help you to make better decisions and to prepare more competitive applications without the stress of meeting application deadlines last minute.


Undergraduate Study Abroad and Language Training

  • Gilman Scholarship for Pell-Grant eligible undergraduates to study abroad for at least four weeks
  • Fund for Education Abroad for students underrepresented in study abroad to participate in programs lasting at least four weeks



Graduate Study Abroad or Teaching Abroad

  • Critical Language Scholarship for graduate students to receive intensive training in languages important to national security and economic competitiveness


Ashley Soulé Conroy Scholarships for Study Abroad

Description: Ashley's Foundation provides three or four $4,000 scholarships for study abroad each term.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen and full-time undergraduate who has completed at least 30 credit hours before study abroad term begins and a 3.0 GPA in order to apply. Must study in one country for at least fourteen weeks. Fall and Spring semester programs only (not summer only).
ONCA Deadlines:  May 1 (for Fall semester); October 1 (for Spring semester)

Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarships

Description: Over 1,200 scholarships of up to $5,000 will be awarded this academic year to U.S. citizens who are full-time undergraduates planning to study abroad. Award amounts will vary depending on the length of study and student need with the average award being $4,000. Students who apply for and receive the Gilman Scholarship to study abroad are now eligible to receive an additional $3,000 Critical Need Language Supplement from the Gilman Program for a total possible award of up to $8,000. Critical languages include: Arabic, Chinese, Korean, Persian, Russian, and others.

Eligibility: Applicants must be Pell-Grant eligible. Must study in one country for at least three weeks. Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer and full Academic Year programs.
ONCA Deadlines: March 1 (for study beginning in Fall); October 1 (for study beginning Winter/Spring)

Bridging Scholarships for Study in Japan

Description: The Association of Teachers of Japanese Bridging Project offers scholarships to American undergraduate students participating in study-abroad programs in Japan. Bridging Scholarship recipients receive a stipend of $2,500 for semester programs or $4,000 for academic year programs. Each scholarship recipient will be expected to send a brief report about his or her study in Japan to the ATJ office within 60 days of returning from abroad.

Eligibility: Undergraduate students majoring in any field of study are eligible to apply for these scholarships. Japanese language study is not a prerequisite. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and must be enrolled as undergraduates in a college or university in the United States before and during the time they are studying abroad. Students studying in Japan on summer programs are not eligible to apply.
ONCA Deadlines:  October 1 for programs that start in Spring semester. April 1 for programs that start in Fall semester.

Critical Language Scholarship

Description: The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program is an intensive overseas language and cultural immersion program for American students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities. The program includes intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences designed to promote rapid language gains. The CLS Program is part of a U.S. government effort to expand dramatically the number of Americans studying and mastering critical foreign languages. Students of diverse disciplines and majors are encouraged to apply. Participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship period, and later apply their critical language skills in their future professional careers.

Eligibility: Undergraduates who are U.S. citizens at the time of application and have completed at least one academic year of study (two semesters) by the beginning of the CLS Program. Students must be enrolled in an accredited U.S. degree-granting program at the undergraduate or graduate level at the time of application.
ONCA Deadlines:
 Applications for CLS are accepted each Fall. Contact ONCA no later than September 1 to start the application process.

FIE Dublin Scholarship

Description: All students enrolled in FIE, a Winthrop study aboad program, can apply for competitve scholarships worth $1,000 each. 

Eligibility: Must be enrolled in the FIE Dublin study abroad program, which includes Fall, Spring, Summer, and Internship programs. (NOTE: we are told that FIE rarely exhausts its scholarship fund!)
Information: Contact the Study Abroad Office for more information about the FIE program. For FIE scholarship opportunities, visit
ONCA Deadlines:
  June 1 for Fall semester. October 15 for Spring semester program.

Freeman Asia Scholarships

Description: The Freeman-ASIA program is designed to support U.S.-based undergraduates with demonstrated financial need who are planning to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia. The program's goal is to increase the number of U.S. citizens and permanent residents with first-hand exposure to and understanding of Asia and its peoples and cultures. Awards from $3,000 - $7,000 available.

Eligibility: Open to undergraduates who have demonstrated financial need and are accepted to a WU-approved study abroad program in Asia. Must have a minimum GPA of 2.8 and have at least one semester remaining at WU after return from study abroad in Asia.
ONCA Deadline: Applications for Summer 2020, Fall 2020, AY 2020-21 and Spring 2021 will be available in January 2020. Contact the Study Abroad Office and ONCA before applying.

Fulbright U.S. Student Program

Description: One of the most widely recognized academic honors, the Fulbright awards provide support for graduate students and young professionals to study or teach abroad. Awards include full grants for up to one year of academic year of study or research, language training, travel grants and teaching assistantships in English.

Eligibility: Applicant must be a U.S. citizen who is a college senior, recent graduate, or graduate student. NOTE: Students may begin the application process as juniors or seniors and are strongly encouraged to begin well in advance of the deadline.
ONCA Deadline: October 1



Fulbright Killam US-Canada Exchange Program

Description: The Killam Fellowships Program allows undergraduate students from Canada and the United States to participate in a program of binational residential exchange. Killam Fellows spend either one semester or a full academic year as an exchange student in the host country.

Eligibility: Applicants must be U.S. citizens who are full-time undergraduate students in good standing and meet the eligibility requirements of their home university to study abroad; complete the application process prior to the published deadlines, in the case of the direct exchange applicants; and, be nominated by one's home university.
ONCA Deadline:
January 15 

Fulbright US-UK Commission for Summer Study in the UK

Description: The US-UK Fulbright Commission offers special Summer Institutes for US citizens to come to the United Kingdom. These summer programs provide the opportunity for US undergraduates to participate in a three-, four-, five- or six-week academic and cultural summer program in the UK. The Summer Institutes will cover the majority of participant costs. This includes round-trip airfare from the US to the UK, tuition and fees at the host university/institution, accommodation and meals and in some cases a small daily allowance.

Eligibility: Must be a US citizen, over age 18, with at least two years of undergraduate study left to complete.
ONCA Deadline:
February 1

Fund for Education Abroad

Description:The mission of the Fund for Education Abroad (FEA) is to provide scholarships and ongoing support to students who are underrepresented among the US study abroad population. FEA makes life-changing, international experiences accessible to all by supporting minority, community college, and first-generation college students before, during, and after they participate in education abroad programs. FEA awards scholarships of up to $10,000 for students who plan to study abroad for a full academic year; $5,000 for students who plan to study abroad during the fall or spring semester; and awards that are prorated by number of weeks in-country (with a minimum of $1,250) for students studying abroad during the summer.

Eligibility: Students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents; currently enrolled as an undergraduate at a college or university in the U.S.; study abroad program must be eligible for credit at the student's home institution; study abroad program must be at least 4 weeks (28 days) in country/countries.
Application Information:
ONCA Deadline:
December 1

Japan Exchange and Teaching Program

Description: Assistant Language Teachers (ALTs) are engaged in English language instruction and make up over 90% of all JET Program participants. They are mainly assigned to local boards of education or elementary, junior high or senior high schools and carry out their duties under the guidance of language teachers' consultants or Japanese teachers of English (JTEs) as specified by the supervisor and/or principal of the board of education and/or school. ALTs teach in Japan for one year.
Eligibility: Applicants must be graduating seniors or recent graduates who have an interest in Japanese culture and language and will be excellent ambassadors for the U.S.
ONCA Deadline: November 1


MEXT Research Student Scholarship

Description: The Research Student Scholarship is a one-and-a-half to two-year scholarship for students with undergraduate degrees to study a subject of their choosing at a graduate school in Japan. Benefits of the program include a monthly allowance of 152,000 yen (approx. $1450) per month; transportation to and from Japan; and university tuition. Proposed field of study must be the field, or any related field, that the applicant studied at a previous university. Applicants must be able to arrive in Japan between April 1-7 or between October 1-7. Proficiency in Japanese is not required.

Eligibility: College graduates not older than 35 years of age; U.S. citizen.
ONCA Deadline: May 1 (for Fall entry)


Organization of American States Fellowships

Description: The Department of Human Development of the Organization of American States (OAS) administers one of the hemisphere's largest multinational fellowships and training programs. OAS offers fellowships for graduate study or research in the Americas in any field except medical and related fields and introductory language studies. Awards are tenable for at least 3 months and up to 2 years and provide travel expenses, tuition, special fees, study materials, and a subsistence allowance.

Eligibility: Applicants must have a university degree, know the language of their host country, and secure acceptance at chosen university, study center, or research site.
Application Information:
Approximate ONCA Deadline: March 15

National Security Education Program (NSEP - Boren)

Description: The National Security Education Program (NSEP) provides scholarships to U.S. undergraduate students for study abroad in world areas critical to U.S. National Security, excluding  Western Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Recipients incur an obligation to work either for an office or agency of the Federal Government involved in national security affairs or in higher education. The maximum NSEP Boren Scholarship award is $8,000 for a summer, $10,000 for a semester, and $20,000 for an academic year. The maximum NSEP Boren Fellowship awards generally vary between $12,000 and $30,000.

Eligibility: The National Security Education Program includes three opportunities for U.S. citizens who are undergraduate and graduate students: (1) NSEP David L. Boren Undergraduate Scholarships for Study Abroad offers opportunities for U.S. students to study in world regions critical to U.S. interests but generally underrepresented in study abroad; (2) NSEP David L. Boren Graduate Fellowships encourages U.S. graduate students to add an important language component to their educations; (3) The Critical Language Enhancement Opportunity offers advanced language training in Arabic, Korean, Mandarin Chinese, Persian, or Russian.
Application Information:
ONCA Deadline: February 1

National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS) Study Abroad Scholarships

Description: Offers scholarship funding to help expand our members' international and cultural knowledge. Two (2) $2,500 scholarships are awarded to members studying abroad during the fall semester, spring semester, or academic year.

Eligibility: Undergraduate NSCS members who have been accepted to a study abroad program approved by their home institution.
ONCA Deadlines: Varies by scholarship.

Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Awards

Description: Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Grants are designed to help support undergraduates accepted to summer study abroad programs. Thirty-eight $1,000 grants are awarded each year.

Eligibility: The competition is open to Phi Kappa Phi members and non-members in all fields of study who meet the following requirements:
(1) Attend an institution with a Phi Kappa Phi chapter; (2) Have a minimum of 30 credit hours (or equivalent) but no more than 90 credit hours (or equivalent) by the deadline, including all AP, credit by exam, transfer credits, etc.; (3) Have a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.75 or higher on a 4.0 scale; (4) Have at least two semesters (or equivalent) remaining in residence at their home institution after completing the study abroad experience; (5) The study abroad program must be taken between May 1 and June 30;  (6) Must have been accepted into a study abroad program (provide the letter of acceptance on an official letterhead as part of your application); (7) Your study abroad plan should relate directly to your academic preparation, potential career choice, and commitment to the welfare of others.
Application Information:
ONCA Deadline: February 1



Pickering Foreign Affairs Graduate Fellowship

Description:  The Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship is funded by the U.S. Department of State and administered by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. The goal of the fellowship program is to attract outstanding students who enroll in two-year master's degree programs in public policy, international affairs, public administration, or academic fields such as business, economics, political science, sociology, or foreign languages, who represent all ethnic, racial and social backgrounds and who have an interest in pursuing a Foreign Service career in the U.S. Department of State. The program develops a source of trained men and women who will represent the skill needs of the Department and who are dedicated to representing America's interests abroad.

Eligibility: Only individuals who are US citizens at the time of application will be considered. Applicants must have a minimum undergraduate grade point average of 3.2 or higher on a 4.0 scale. At the time of application, candidates must be seeking admission to graduate school for the following academic year. Winners are expected to enroll in a two-year, full-time master's degree program in either public policy, international affairs, or public administration, or in an academic field such as business, economics, political science, sociology, or foreign languages (U.S. graduate institutions only).
ONCA Deadline: January 15



Rotary Global Grants

Description: Scholarships to support one year of graduate-level study abroad with sustainable, high-impact outcomes in one of Rotary's six areas of focus: peace and conflict prevention/resolution, disease prevention and treatment, water and sanitation, maternal and child health, basic education and literacy, economic and community development. Minimum of $30,000 for graduate-level study during one academic year abroad. Funds may be used for round-trip transportation, tuition and fees, room, board, language training (if necessary) and living expenses.

Eligibility: All applicants must be sponsored by their local Rotary Club, which develops specific eligibility requirements.
Program and Application Information:
Approximate ONCA Deadline:
Varies depending upon location; between March and July.



Sigma Delta Tau Study Abroad Scholarships

Description: The scholarship provides up to $3,000 for the purpose of studying in a program that furthers the applicant's engagement with Sigma Tau Delta's mission for an academic term or year in a certified, undergraduate program outside the country in which the nominating chapter is located. Applicants should demonstrate academic scholarship and chapter service; they also must explain the relevance of their study abroad program and activities to fostering the discipline of English, including literature, language, writing, or literacy.
Undergraduate members who have been accepted to study abroad for a Fall or Spring semester program approved by their home institution.
ONCA Deadline:
March 1 for Fall semester. November 1 for Spring semester.



Teaching Assistant Program in France (TAPIF)

Description: The Teaching Assistant Program in France offers you the opportunity to work in France for 7 months, teaching English to French students of all ages. Each year, over 1,200 American citizens and permanent residents teach in public schools across all regions of metropolitan France and in the overseas departments of France such as French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique and Réunion. The American cohort is part of the larger Assistants de langue en France program, which recruits 4,500 young educators from 60 countries to teach 15 languages annually in France. The Assistants de langue en France program is managed by the CIEP, the Centre international d'études pédagogiques.

Eligibility: Graduating seniors and graduates aged 20-35 with intermediate French language proficiency and an interest in teaching children.
ONCA Deadline: January 1


Tortuga Study Abroad Scholarship

Description: Young people deserve to experience the world beyond their college campuses, but not everyone can afford to travel, especially if you’re on a student budget. The Tortuga Study Abroad Scholarship is awarded biannually to passionate students who want to explore the world. At Tortuga, our mission is to help you live on your terms, including students studying abroad. When customers purchase luggage from us for their trips, they are “paying it forward” by funding scholarships for students like you.

Eligibilty: To apply for the Tortuga Study Abroad Scholarship, you must: be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or currently studying in the US on a student visa, be a full-time undergraduate student in good academic standing at a four-year, degree-granting college or university in the U.S., and have applied to or been accepted into a study abroad program eligible for credit by your college or university.


Deadline: April 1 (Fall) November 1 (Spring)

Last Updated: 2/25/20