National deadline:  January 20, 2015 - This is the "received by" deadline, not the postmarked deadline.

Eligibility requirements for Whitaker Fellows (pre-doctoral):

  • U.S. citizen or permanent resident.
  • Be in the field of biomedical engineering/bioengineering or a closely-related field (Chemical, Mechanical or Electrical Engineering with substantive interest and background in Biomedicine) or, if your institution doesn't offer a formalized BME program, have demonstrated commitment to the field of BME.
  • Be no more than 3 years from the receipt of your most recent degree, or be currently enrolled.
  • Have language ability to carry out the proposed project in the host country at the time of departure.
  • Hold a Bachelor's degree by the beginning date of the grant or be in or have recently completed a Master's degree or be in a PhD program or be currently employed, with the most recent degree no higher than an MS.

Eligibility requirements for Whitaker Scholars (post-doctoral):

  • Same basic requirements as for the Whitaker Fellows but must currently have a PhD (within the past 3 years of grant start date) or will be awarded the PhD before beginning the Whitaker grant.

Award summary and conditions:  The Whitaker International Program sends emerging leaders in U.S. biomedical engineering (or bioengineering) overseas to undertake a self-designed project that will enhance their careers within the field.  The goal of the program is to assist the development of professional leaders who are not only superb scientists, but who also will advance the profession through an international outlook. Along with supporting grant projects in an academic setting, the Whitaker International Program encourages grantees to engage in policy work and propose projects in an industry setting. Activities include:

  • Conducting academic or scientific research in a university or laboratory or
  • Pursuing coursework at an academic institution or
  • Interning at a policy institute, or in an industrial or  non-profit setting
  • Other options are possible

The Whitaker International Fellows and Scholars Program offers a stipend commensurate with the recipient's experience and expected expenses in the host country.  Award benefits include:

  • Round-trip international airfare
  • A monthly living stipend commensurate with the recipient's expenses
  • Health & Accident insurance
  • Travel Enhancement Fund
  • Enrichment Seminar in Europe
  • Fellows Only: Tuition (and bench fees) reimbursement, capped at US$10,000 (regardless of country of exchange or exchange rate). Individual reimbursement amounts are determined by the Whitaker Program at the time of grant award (see details).

Application process: Electronic and hard copy.  You must submit application materials (except official transcripts and the letter of support from host institutions) online. Transcripts and letter(s) of support must be submitted in hard-copy only.
Hard copy materials should be mailed to:

Whitaker International Awards Competition
US Student Programs
Institute of International Education
809 United Nations Plaza
New York, NY 10017

A complete application includes:

  • Application Form
  • Motivation and Personal Experiences Essay (1 page)
  • Previous Research Experience Essay (2 pages)
  • Proposed Plan of Study, Internship and/or Research (2 pages)
  • Future Plans Essay (1 page)
  • Foreign Language Report
  • Dean of a School or Chair of Biomedical Engineering Department Nomination Letter
  • Three Letters of Reference
  • One set of Official Transcripts from all Post-Secondary Degree Granting Institutions*
  • Letter of Support from Overseas Host Institution*
* - Indicates an application material that is NOT submitted online.

For detailed application information and guidelines go to: The online application will generate a PDF document automatically, which you will be able to preview. To see what your auto-generated document will look like, click to see a sample PDF (283 KB).  Note: you will need Adobe Reader or a similar program to view PDF documents .

Selection process:  Applicants will be notified about whether or not they are selected by early April and awards typically begin between the first of August and the first of October.

Contact information:  The Whitaker International Program is administered by the U.S. Student Programs division at the Institute of International Education by:
Sabeen Altaf
Program Manager
Science & Technology Programs
+1 212.984.5442