Funding Opportunities

There are many resources to support Russian and East European Studies both here at the University of Chicago and also at the national level. In the past, our undergraduate students have successfully competed for FLAG and SITG grants, which are distributed by the University of Chicago’s Study Abroad office and fund summer language programs and undergraduate thesis research abroad. With the support of these programs, our students have spent their summers in Russia, Poland, Croatia, Serbia, the Czech Republic, etc.

In addition to this financial support at the University of Chicago, the fact that many of the languages we teach are designated as critical by the United States government means that there are a variety of granting organizations at the national level that support study of REES languages and cultures. Here is a sampling of national organizations that run programs and offer scholarships to support study of Russia and Eastern Europe:

  • American Councils:
    • Balkan Language Initiative
    • Eurasian Regional Language Program (ERLP)
    • Advanced Russian Language and Area Studies Program (RLASP)
    • Overseas Professional and Intercultural Training Program (OPIT)
    • Business Russian Language and Internship
  • Critical Language Scholarship
  • Boren Awards

Of course, one of the most prestigious opportunities for studying abroad is the Fulbright program. As you can see for yourself from the national acceptance rates compiled below, students who apply for Fulbright Study/Research grants in Eastern Europe have a higher chance of success than applicants for other countries. At the University of Chicago, we offer advanced language and culture courses that can help you craft a compelling candidacy for Fulbright applications in Russia and Eastern Europe.

Fulbright Study/Research Grant Acceptance Rates: 2019-2020

  • Croatia: 20% (5 applications, 1 award)
  • Serbia 25% (8 applications, 2 awards)
  • Albania: 25% (8 applications, 2 awards)
  • Czech Republic: 27% (18 applications, 5 awards)
  • Bulgaria 30% (20 applications, 6 awards)
  • Russia: 32% (31 applications, 10 awards)
  • Poland: 40% (30 applications, 12 awards)
  • Kosovo: 50% (4 applications, 2 awards)
  • Ukraine: 71% (14 applications, 10 awards)
  • Slovak Republic: 100% (2 applications, 2 awards)
  • North Macedonia: *200% (0 applications, 2 awards)

By comparison……..

  • Ireland: 4% (139 applications, 6 awards)
  • UK: 4% (1048 applications, 43 awards)

College Center for Research and Fellowships

The College Center for Research and Fellowships (CCRF) provides comprehensive advising and application support for select nationally competitive fellowships. Many of the opportunities listed on their website require University of Chicago endorsement and all students interested in applying for any of the opportunities are strongly encouraged to carefully review all of the information provided about each opportunity and attend a relevant information session in advance of beginning an application process. You can read more about opportunities and the application processes by visiting the CCRF website and clicking through the available awards.


UChicagoGrad supports graduate students with Boren, CLS, and Fulbright applications. Visit the UChicagoGrad website to browse their fellowship database and learn about other prestigious opportunities.