The U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv is pleased to announce the open competition for the 2017-18 Global UGRAD Exchange Program

The U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv is pleased to announce the open competition for the 2017-18 Global UGRAD Exchange Program, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA). This international educational and cultural exchange program brings future leaders form underrepresented communities to the United States to experience the U.S. educational system, enhance their knowledge, and explore U.S. culture and values. It also affords students the opportunity to share their cultures and traditions with people in the United States. Global UGRAD is administered by World Learning.

Global UGRAD will provide a select group of approximately 250 students from around the world with scholarships for one academic semester of undergraduate, non-degree study in the United States. The scholarship will cover international travel, tuition, room and board, accident/sickness insurance, a small monthly stipend, and funding for books. Global UGRAD is a substantive exchange program designed to expose students to the U.S. educational system, society, and culture. Finalists represent diverse disciplines, from architecture to engineering, biochemistry to literature and education.

Participants cannot choose their host institution and will be placed at accredited colleges or universities based on their academic interests.  Students will live in university dormitories and will have the opportunity to participate in campus organizations and activities. All students are required to participate in volunteer community service activities and are encouraged to participate in professional development activities as part of the Global UGRAD experience. This is a non-degree program, so students should check with their Israeli university whether any credits accumulated during the UGRAD program can be transferred.

Applicants may request either the fall (August 2017) or spring semester (January 2018) in their on-line application. Students will not be able to travel before or after their specified program dates.

Eligibility criteria:

Candidates should be highly motivated and demonstrate leadership through academic work, community involvement, and extracurricular activities. The Global UGRAD Program is merit-based and is open to anyone who fits the eligibility criteria:

  • over 18 years of age;
  • a citizen of Israel, currently residing in the country;
  • enrolled as an undergraduate in good standing at any accredited university, public or private, and has at least one semester remaining at their home university at the conclusion of the UGRAD program;
  • completed secondary education in their home country;
  • a solid command of written and spoken English
  • able to begin studies in the United States in August 2017 or January 2018 (selected participants may not defer to a later date);
  • eligible to receive and maintain the US student exchange visa (J-1) required for the program;
  • cleared by a physician to participate in the program;
  • committed to returning to their home country after the completion of the program.

Individuals in the following circumstances are not eligible for the Global UGRAD Program:

  • U.S. citizens and permanent residents of the United States;
  • Individuals currently studying, residing, or working outside of their home country;
  • Local employees of the U.S. missions abroad who work for the U.S. Department of State and/or the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID); employees are also ineligible for one year following the termination of employment;
  • Immediate family members (i.e. spouses and children) of U.S. Department of State and USAID employees; family members are also ineligible for one year following the termination of employment;
  • Current World Learning employees and their immediate family members.

English language testing:

All students nominated by U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv as principals and alternate candidates for 2017-16 Global UGRAD program will be required to take the official TOEFL examination prior to university confirmation.  The preferred TOEFL PBT score is 500 or higher.  TOEFL vouchers will be provided for nominated students only.

Program costs:

The U.S. Government pays for the participants’ international travel, university tuition, room and board, health insurance, and offers a small monthly stipend, and funding for books.

Application process:

Applications are open from November 2, 2016 and due by 11:59 PM (Tel Aviv time) on December 31, 2016.  Click HERE for direct link for the application. Please submit transcripts as soon as possible, as you will not be able to add additional information after the deadline. Application guide

Competition is merit-based, and students from all backgrounds are welcome to apply. Applicants will be considered without regard to race, religion, sex, age, and/or physical impairment.

A complete application package includes:

  • online application
  • academic transcripts for years of university study (with English translations),
  • two letters of reference (at least one from your university/college with English translation);
  • a copy of passport bio page
  • PLEASE NOTE: Incomplete or late applications will NOT be accepted 

 For more information see :


We look forward to receiving your applications!