The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs scholarships grants offer a range of opportunities for students who are pursuing educational goals. The Bureau is part of the United States Department of State and was established to foster mutual understanding between Americans and people of other countries from around the world. Through this organization, there are several cultural exchange programs which are operated to meet this goal. The Bureau was mandated as part of the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961.
The range of educational programs operated by the Bureau is quite varied and is based on the benefits of international cultural and educational exchange, mutual understanding and leadership development. The ECA Bureau works to engage students, youth, educators, athletes, artists and rising leaders through numerous fields in the U.S. as well as some 160 countries. This is accomplished through cultural, academic, professional and sports exchanges. By striving to reflect the United States’ diversity and global society, the Bureau’s programs, activities and funding have encouraged involvement of both American as well as international participants from groups that were previously underrepresented. This includes women as well as people with disabilities and racial and ethnic minorities. Alumni of the ECA are composed of more than 1 million people from around the world. This includes 50 Nobel Laureates as well as 350 current as well as former heads of state and government.
Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Scholarship Grant Programs and operated by the ECA include:
· Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange
· Fulbright Scholarship
· Future Leaders Exchange
· Gilman Program
· Hubert Humphrey Fellowship
· International Visitor Leadership Program
· Youth Exchange and Study
· Edmund S. Muskie Graduate Fellowship Program
· International Cultural Property Protection Program
A Division of Cultural Relations was first established by the State Department in 1938. Since the Bureau’s inception it has worked to create programs as well as international exchanges with a focus on learning about the differences that exist between various cultures and countries. The Fulbright Program is perhaps the most well-known of these programs and was founded in 1946 as a result of legislation started by Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas. This goal of this international education program is to increase mutual understanding between other countries of the world and the United States. Like other international education exchanges sponsored by the Bureau, the program seeks to develop world leaders who are capable of promoting a better understanding of the United States internationally.
The Bureau also offers a number of special initiatives, including the Global Cultural Initiative. The goal of this program is to build and assemble numerous talents and resources of cultural institutions in America in an effort to support international cultural diplomacy efforts. To meet this goal, the initiative focuses on a partnership between the U.S. government and the private sector by connecting foreign audiences with art forms and artists in the U.S.
In addition, the World Cup Sports Initiative is sponsored by the Bureau. Through this initiative, soccer clinics are sponsored by U.S. Soccer National Team players and coaches in Bahrain, South Africa, Uganda and Nigeria as a way of demonstrating how leadership, respect, teamwork and conflict resolution can achieve academic achievement and life skills.
The Bureau also operates the International Cultural Protection Program. The Convention on Cultural Property Implementation Act is executed through this program and views requests from countries in regards to limiting importation of ethnological or archaeological artifacts into the United States.
Use the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Scholarships and Grants Special Search Function
For students who are interested in opportunities through the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs scholarships grants program, the Bureau has an international scholarship search function on their website that makes it possible for students to search for programs for U.S. citizens as well as non-U.S. citizens. In addition, there is an Advanced Search function that makes it possible to drill down search results even further. Through the advanced search function, visitors can search based on a wide array of program themes. For more go to Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.