How do I choose a university in the United States?

Many factors should weigh into your decision: courses offered, financial aid, geographic location, size, etc.  We offer several books in our Resource Library that can help you choose the schools to select (out of 4,300 recognized US colleges and universities). Find out more here.

Also try this website to search through a database of 4000 US institutions using specific selection criteria.  Finally, if you are choosing an undergraduate institution, join us at our annual Brussels College Night which happens each fall.

How will I go about getting an internship/job opportunity in the United States?

Most students find internships on their own or you can use a company to help find you an internship (for a fee). See more information click here.

What exams do I have to take in order to study in the United States?

It depends on the program to which you are applying. Generally speaking, all students who do not have a degree from an English-speaking program will need to take an English proficiency exam (IELTS/TOEFL). For the LLM degree, only an English proficiency test may be required. For Master’s programs, the GRE or GMAT may be required in addition to the English proficiency test. For undergraduate (Bachelor’s) programs, the ACT or SAT (and possibly the SAT II subject tests) in addition to an English proficiency exam could be required.

Where do I take these exams and how do I prepare for them?

You can prepare for these exams by borrowing a practice book from our center. We ask a deposit of 25 Euros. People generally borrow books for 2 weeks. For more info, click here.

How can I finance my trip abroad?

Many students finance their studies in the US with personal funds, loans (such as the Ferdinand Lazard Foundation) or scholarships (Fulbright, Belgian American Educational Foundation, Rotary etc). Working on or off campus may also be a possibility. Contact the institutions you are applying to for more information. See also: http://www.fulbright.be/fulbright-awards/non-fulbright-awards/

What is the application timeline for a Fulbright scholarship?

This depends on the scholarship. We have deadlines that range from October 31st until April 30th.  Please consult our website to find out which application deadline applies to you.

I am a PhD student in Belgium and would like to go to the United States for research. Is this possible?

Indeed. If you do not have a PhD you are considered part of the Student Category at Fulbright, for which the final application deadline is April 30th. To prove admission to a US university, please submit a letter of affiliation to the Fulbright Commission.

I know what a letter of acceptance is, but what is a letter of affiliation?

A letter of affiliation is a letter (on university letterhead) written by a professor, dean or admissions staff members that proves you have been admitted to do research or work in a lab of that university. This letter should provide the student/researcher’s full name, exact dates of time in the US, and a brief description of what the student will be doing/researching.

Am I eligible for a Fulbright scholarship?

To find out if you are eligible please check with requirements on Fulbright awards page.

What visa do I need to study or conduct research in the United States?

Generally students/researchers do not get to decide which visa they will need to travel to the United States. Once you are accepted to a degree program or as a researcher, the institution in the US will send you either an I-20 form or a DS-2019 form. Then you will need to call the US embassy for a visa appointment, pay the fees and obtain your visa. See also: http://www.fulbright.be/study-in-the-us/graduate-studies/visa-information/

How much money does a Fulbright Grant cover?

The amount of the award varies. Typically grants range from 5,000-35,000 US dollars. We also provide health and accident insurance and visa sponsorship. Beware that the State of Massachusetts, as well as other universities, do not accept the Fulbright’s health insurance plan and you will have to buy the health insurance, plan at your particular university.

I have a partner. Is he/she covered under the Fulbright scholarship?

Only if you are married (not officially living together). Fulbright will provide visa sponsorship for your spouse (and children). Health and accident coverage does not extend to your spouse or children.

What is the 2 year rule that applies to the visa I would be on with Fulbright?

The 2-year rule stipulates that a Fulbright grantee must return to his/her country of nationality or last legal residence for an aggregate period of 2 years before being allowed to re-enter the U.S. as an immigrant, H category temporary worker, or L category intra-company transferee. You may go back to the U.S. during those 2 years on any other type of visa, but the time spent in the U.S. will not count towards satisfying the aggregate period of 2 years.

Are Fulbright scholarships exempted from Belgian Taxes?

Scholarships should not be declared in the tax return of individuals. Please find below an extract of commentary in French and Dutch as well as the link to the Federal Public Finance Service website.

” Commentaire de l’art. 38, CIR 92 : BOURSES D’ETUDES ALLOUEES A DES ETUDIANTS

Numéro 38/37

Les bourses allouées à des étudiants pour leur permettre de faire des études déterminées et de perfectionner leur formation sont exemptes de tous impôts, puisqu’elles ne peuvent être assimilées ni à des rémunérations pour services rendus, ni à des revenus divers visés à l’art. 90, 2°, CIR 92 (voir toutefois 38/33, 5°).”

For details: http://ccff02.minfin.fgov.be/KMWeb/document.do?method=view&id=4f3888db-2870-4280-83db-1a328c5a5fea&documentLanguage=FR#IV.C.


Nummer 38/37

De beurzen die aan studenten worden verleend om hen in staat te stellen zich aan bepaalde studies te wijden en hun opleiding te vervolmaken, zijn van alle belasting vrijgesteld, daar ze niet met bezoldigingen voor bewezen diensten, noch met diverse inkomsten als bedoeld in art. 90, 2°, WIB 92 (zie evenwel 38/33, 5°) kunnen worden gelijkgesteld.”

For details: http://ccff02.minfin.fgov.be/KMWeb/document.do?method=view&id=cbc39464-7832-4846-92b8-d6d19373b354&documentLanguage=NL#IV.C.

If I am a Belgian University or University College, what resources could I use to develop institutional partnerships with US institutions?

— NAFSA Regional Conferences are later this year if you’d like to recommend an event based on you contact’s interests or IIE Locator Reports (where Belgian students study):

— IIE Center for International Partnerships in Higher Education:

FAQ on Attending Embassy Receptions
Please read the info on this page: http://www.fulbright.be/study-in-the-us/faq/embassy-receptions/