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2017 Wenner-Gren Foundation Fully funded PhD Fellowships for African Students

The Wenner-Gren Foundation is happy to announce fully funded fellowships for PhD studies to study at South African University. African students are eligible to apply for this fellowship.

The Wadsworth African Fellowships are intended to provide support for African students undertaking study leading to a PhD at a South African university that can provide them with international-level training in anthropology (including biological anthropology and archaeology).

The Wenner-Gren Foundation has three major goals – to support significant and innovative anthropological research into humanity’s biological and cultural origins, development and variation, to foster the creation of an international community of research scholars in anthropology, and to provide leadership at the forefronts of the discipline.

Course Level: Fellowships are available to pursue Ph.D. programme.

Study Subject: Fellowships are awarded to applicants that can provide them with international-level training in anthropology (including biological anthropology and archaeology).

Scholarship Award: The annual fellowship is $17,500 and can be used towards travel, living expenses, tuition, student fees, insurance, books, research expenses, and any other relevant categories of expenditure while studying at the Host institution. The fellowship is renewable for up to two additional years upon successful completion of each preceding year’s study. A separate application can be made for an additional year of funding to support dissertation write-up.

Number of Scholarships: The Wenner-Gren Foundation awards only one Wadsworth African Fellowship annually.

Scholarship can be taken at South African University

Eligibility: The following criteria must be met in order for applicants to be eligible for the scholarship:

  • The Wadsworth African Fellowship is intended for young African scholars who may not otherwise be able to pursue a doctoral degree in anthropology. Normally, applicants will be under 35 years of age at the time they begin their fellowship. They must be citizens and residents of an African country at the time of application. They must also be members of an underrepresented group in academic anthropology/archaeology.
  • Applicants must be prepared to demonstrate their reasons for choosing their Host Institution (the institution where they plan to study). Currently, applications to the University of Witwatersrand and the University of Cape Town are given priority.
  • A Host Institution can have only two active Wadsworth African fellows. Because anthropology can be taught in a variety of departments (Social Anthropology, Archaeology, Anatomy, etc.) it is expected that there will normally be only one active fellow per department at any time.
  • Applicants may have already begun their training for the doctoral degree at a South African university but they must demonstrate why their funding circumstances have changed and why they now do not have sufficient funding to complete their degree.
  • Students who have advanced beyond their first year of doctoral studies/training are not eligible to apply.
  • At the time they submit their application, candidates must have an application for doctoral admission pending at a South African institution that will provide training.
  • The applicant must have a Host Sponsor, or supervisor, who is a member of the South African institution at which the candidate plans to pursue training. The Host Sponsor must be willing to assume responsibility for overseeing the candidate’s training. A Host Sponsor cannot sponsor more than one applicant per funding season.
  • The applicant must have a Home Sponsor who is a member of the institution at which the applicant received his or her prior degree/s. The Home Sponsor must be prepared to supply a letter of reference for the applicant. In some cases, the Host Institution may be the same institution where the applicant received his or her prior degree/s. If this situation applies, the Home Sponsor should be the Head of a relevant department at the Host Institution or another member of the academic staff who is familiar with the applicant, but who will not be acting as the Host Sponsor.
  • Applicants may submit only one application per funding season. They may not apply through two or more Host Institutions/Departments at the same time.
  • If the Foundation receives more than one application for a single South African Department, the Foundation will contact that department to have them prioritize their applicants for potential funding.
  • Applications exclusively seeking support for fieldwork expenses and/or dissertation write-up are not accepted. Applicants should apply to the Dissertation Fieldwork Grant program for fieldwork expenses. The Foundation only funds dissertation write-up for Wadsworth African Fellows who have received funding for training purposes from the Wenner-Gren Foundation prior to undertaking their fieldwork.
  • Applicants must be able to demonstrate that they have sufficient funds in addition to the Wadsworth African Fellowship to complete their training at the Host Institution.
  • If a Wadsworth African Fellowship is awarded, the applicant must agree to comply with the Requirements and Conditions of the Wadsworth African Fellowship.

Nationality: African students ( Algeria, Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Ivory Coast, Djibouti, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Western Sahara, Zambia and  Zimbabwe) are eligible to apply for this fellowship.

College Admission Requirement

Entrance Requirements: Normally, applicants will be under 35 years of age at the time they begin their fellowship.

English Language Requirements: Applicants whose first language is not English are usually required to provide evidence of proficiency in English at the higher level required by the University.

How to Apply: The mode of application is online.

  • The Wenner-Gren Foundation awards only one Wadsworth African Fellowship annually. The Foundation advises applicants to follow closely all the procedures for completing the application.
  • Applications must be submitted on the most recent official application form. Application forms and guidelines for completing these forms are available three months before each application deadline.
  • The Foundation operates an online application submission procedure. All application forms and other required application materials must be submitted online by the application deadline of December 15. All material must be submitted in a format compatible with Microsoft Word 2003, 2007, or 2010, or as an Adobe PDF. Acceptable document formats include “.doc”, “.docx”, “.txt”, “.xls” and “.pdf” extensions.
  • Two printed copies of the application materials must also be mailed to the Foundation. The printed material must be postmarked on or before the December 15 application deadline and received in the Foundation offices no later than two weeks after the application deadline. Send the printed copies to:
  • International Programs
    Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research
    470 Park Avenue South, 8th Floor
    New York City, NY 10016, USA
  • If it is not possible to submit your application online because of inadequate internet access in your country of origin, you must notify the Foundation at least one week before the deadline to arrange to submit an application by conventional mail (internationalprograms-at-wennergren.org).
  • The Foundation will consider only one application for each South African university department each year. If the Foundation receives more than one application per department, the Department Head will be asked to prioritize their candidates for the fellowship.
  • Applications and all supporting materials such as CVs, transcripts, etc. must be in English.
  • The Wadsworth African Fellowship application asks for the following categories of information, which must be submitted by the December 15 deadline:
    • General information about the applicant, the Home Institution and Sponsor, and the Host Institution and Sponsor
    • The answers to three questions about your background and your proposed plan of study, your research interests, and your professional goals or plans. Applicants are advised to read the questions and instructions carefully as they develop their answers.
    • A detailed budget
    • Copies of official transcripts from your Home Institution. Provide a translation if they are not in English.
    • Language Competency: Where applicable, the applicant must provide evidence of competency in the language of the institution in which he/she will be pursuing training
    • Curriculum vitae for the applicant and Host Sponsor
  • Letters from Sponsors. The applicant should request letters from both the Home Sponsor and the Host Sponsor, to be sent directly to the Foundation by the application deadline.
  • Please note that actual copies of travel permits, visas, and/or certificates of language competency are not required at the application stage. If an application is successful, the Foundation will expect that the necessary permits, visas, and certificates are in hand. Fellowship funds will not be awarded until the Foundation has received copies of all relevant permits, visas, and certificates.
  • Do not send any other material, such as additional letters of recommendation, computer disks, manuscripts, publications, photographs, or recordings to the Foundation in support of your application. This material will not be used in the review process and cannot be returned.
  • Before submitting your application, please read the information on US tax issues if you are intending to be present in the US during your fellowship period.

Application Form

Application Deadline: Fellowship application deadline is December 15, 2017.

Scholarship Link

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