Fellowships & Scholarships

Anne Shen
Anne Shen '17, 2016 Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Fulbright recipient.

Fellowships & Scholarships

Fellowships, broadly defined, fund purposeful activity.

To be more specific, fellowships can fund (among other things) language study abroad, undergraduate and postgraduate research, service opportunities, graduate and professional study, independent projects, teaching (both in the U.S. and abroad)... the possibilities are endless, which can be both inspiring and intimidating! Career Education and the Fellowships team are here to help you navigate, no matter where you’re starting or where you hope to go.

You Are Here  |  Common Starting Places  |  Toolkit

You Are Here

(And we’re here to help!)

There’s no wrong place to start a fellowships search. You may have an idea of what you might like to do; you may wonder what fellowships are available to you; or you might have no idea even what questions to ask! We have resources for no matter where you are in the fellowships process.

First things first...

student

I am a...

gameplan

I am looking for a fellowship to support…

Browse fellowships by topic, including:

 

​• Undergraduate research
• Graduate or professional degrees/
research study

​• Travel
​• Service
​• Teaching
​• Language study/study abroad

Common Starting Places

I don’t know where to begin. 

This is a great place to start. (After all, no one spontaneously becomes a fellowships expert!)

  • Explore possibilities by major or interest.
  • Peruse our deadlines (which you can filter by clicking on Fellowships!).
  • Make an appointment via Handshake: we would love to meet you, learn more about your interests, and start a conversation about which fellowships might be a good fit (you can also drop by our Virtual Pop-up advising—listings in Handshake).

 

I don’t know what I want to do after graduation.

We completely understand (believe us: from personal experience, we understand) that often it can feel like everyone but you has a plan for after graduation. The truth, though, is the quiet majority aren’t certain about what comes next. Fellowships can provide amazing opportunities postgrad!

  • Check out our resource for graduates.
  • Look through some of our deadlines (which you can filter for Postgraduate opportunities by clicking on Fellowships to see a variety of options for after graduation).
    • Did you know? “Postgraduate” does not exclusively mean graduate school! There are many postgraduate fellowships that support travel, service, and other activities.
  • Make an appointment via Handshake: we would love to meet you, learn more about your interests, and start a conversation about which fellowships might be a good fit for what you might like to do next (you can also drop by our Virtual Pop-up advising—listings in Handshake).
  • You can also book a general career advising appointment with other members of the Career Education team.

 

I could never get a fellowship– why even bother looking into them?

Here’s the truth: there is no platonic ideal of a fellowships candidate, and no one could be an equally strong (or equally weak!) candidate for every fellowship. Fellowships are all about fit and feasibility: are you a good fit for what a program is looking for, is it a good fit for you, and is what you’re proposing to do feasible? We’re here to help you navigate those questions. 

  • The only way to 100% guarantee that you won’t get a fellowship is if you don’t apply.
  • Our promise to you is that we’ll be honest: if something you’re looking at isn’t a very good fit, we’ll be happy to talk it through with you.
  • Many people are worried about GPA—but many fellowships do not have a minimum GPA requirement. Even when grades do factor into an application, they are just one of many things considered: essays, resumes and experience, and letters of recommendation make up a much more complete picture of a candidate.
  • Exploring fellowships doesn’t lock you in to anything, and you don’t have to have the next ten years of your life planned out in order to apply. 

 

I’ve already graduated (perhaps a while ago). Is it too late for me to apply for a fellowship?

It is never too late to apply for a fellowship. While it is true that some fellowships are only available to graduating seniors, many more are evergreen opportunities—whether you graduated months, years, or decades ago! If you’re not sure where to get started, here are some helpful tips:

  • Check out our resource for graduates.
  • Look through some of our deadlines (which you can filter for Postgraduate opportunities by clicking on Fellowships to see a variety of options graduates).
    • Did you know? “Postgraduate” does not exclusively mean graduate school! There are many postgraduate fellowships that support travel, service, and other activities.
  • Make an appointment via Handshake: we would love to meet you, learn more about your interests, and start a conversation about which fellowships might be a good fit for what you might like to do next (you can also drop by our Virtual Pop-up advising—listings in Handshake).
  • You can also book a general career advising appointment with other members of the Career Education team, like an Alumnae Advisor.

 

I know what I want to do, but I’m not sure how I can get there.

The good news is that there are potentially a lot of different ways for fellowships to support what you’d like to do, and we’re here to help you figure out your options!

  • Explore possibilities by major, activity, or international student status.
  • Make an appointment via Handshake: we would love to meet you, learn more about your interests, and strategize about which fellowships might help you reach your goals (you can also drop by our Virtual Pop-up advising—listings in Handshake).
  • You can also make an appointment to talk with your Advisor for Career Exploration (ACE) or Alumnae Advisors to see what other paths there might be towards your goals.

 

I’ve heard of [insert name of fellowship!] and think it sounds interesting, but I’m not sure where to start.

Excellent! This is a great chance not just to look at the fellowship you’re interested in, but also potentially others. One of the best things about fellowships is that the work you put in to one application is a huge help for other potential applications in the future: 

  • Many fellowships have resources on the Fellowships & Scholarships page, where you can learn more about requirements, timelines, application materials, and other details.
    • Did you know? There are many more fellowships out there that do not have resources on our website, because you apply for them directly (that is, not through Wellesley). The fellowships team is always happy to help with any fellowship application, whether it’s a Wellesley opportunity or not!
  • Look through some of our deadlines and explore fellowships by major or activity (like travel, service, etc.). Are any of them similar to what you’re looking at, sparking similar interest…?
  • Make an appointment via Handshake: we’d love to meet you and talk about the fellowships process, what might be a good fit, and what your next steps might be.

 

I want to apply for [insert name of fellowship or fellowships]

  • Many fellowships have resources on the Fellowships & Scholarships page, where you can learn more about requirements, timelines, application materials, and other details.
    • Did you know? There are many more fellowships out there that do not have resources on our website, because you apply for them directly (that is, not through Wellesley). The fellowships team is always happy to help with any fellowship application, whether it’s a Wellesley opportunity or not!
  • Check out our toolkit and sample timelines to get a sense of how the application process might shape up.
  • Make an appointment via Handshake: Did you know that the Fellowships team doesn’t just advise? We can do draft review, help you build timelines, and strategize about your applications as well.

Toolkit

Deadlines

Deadlines

Looking thruogh our fellowships deadlines listing is a great way to explore possibilities and stay on top of timelines. Click on "Fellowships" then filter by major or activity (i.e.travel, service, etc.)

Personal Statements

Personal Statements

A personal statement is a narrative essay that connects your background, experiences, and goals to the mission, requirements, and desired outcomes of the specific opportunity you are seeking. Learn more about this key component to many fellowship applications by watching our webinar or through the written resource below.

References

Requesting References

We recommend that you allow at least eight weeks for a professor to prepare a letter of reference. This resource is an overview of how to request a letter and provide all the necessary information to faculty members up front.

CV/Resume

Writing your Resume or CV

Resumes and CVs (curriculum vitaes) are documents that clearly presents your current and past experiences and accomplishments so that your reader can understand the unique value that you bring. Career Education has several resources to help you compose these documents.

Amal Cheema
My professors and peers taught me that wherever you look, there is a question that needs to be explored and that can speak to your meaning in life. When you find one, you must believe you can answer it and realize that you may be surprised by what you discover.
Amal Cheema ’17
2017 Watson fellowship recipient

“[There are] a lot of different conceptions of the ocean, and a lot of exciting and creative solutions that are happening all over the world.”

“It was a wonderful new experience to visit community health care centers and NGOs. I was able to speak with community health workers who provide appropriate and equitable care as trusted members of their community.”

“My favorite feature of the fellowship is the latitude that fellows have in the classroom. The Wellesley-Yenching Graduate Teaching Fellowship is a fantastic opportunity to explore teaching. This continued to be true as we transitioned to remote teaching [due to Covid-19], especially with the support of my co-fellows.”