2017/2018 Harvard South Africa Fellowship Program (Fully Funded to study in Harvard, USA)

Application Deadline: April 4, 2016 11:59pm EST)

President Derek Bok established the Harvard South Africa Fellowship Program (HSAFP) in 1979 to address the needs of South Africans who were denied access to advanced education by the apartheid system. This program was established, and is still intended, for mid-career professionals educationally disadvantaged by past laws and resource allocations in South Africa.

Fellows are selected because they have shown considerable skill in their chosen fields, and are expected to benefit from advanced training.  Fellowships are for a year of study in one of Harvard’s Professional Schools or Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, with tuition waivers provided by the School once fellows are admitted.

General administrative funds for program management, stipends, and airfare for the fellow are provided by the Office of the President, and administered by the Center for African Studies, under the directorship of Professor John Mugane.  There are typically six fellows studying at Harvard each year, resulting in the award of over 200 fellowships since the program began.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • The HSAFP was conceived largely to provide educational enrichment for men and women in mid-career, that is, individuals in various occupations who have shown considerable skill in their chosen fields and leadership and are expected to benefit from advanced training.
  • Thus candidates who have just completed, or who have not yet completed, a first degree are not selected unless this degree has been pursued concurrently with, or subsequent to, experience in the workplace.
  • Fellows usually range in age from 30 to 45 years.

Fellowship Worth:

  • The fellowship provides for payment of all tuition for the full period of enrollment at Harvard.
  • The fellowship also funds the round-trip airfare between the fellow’s home and Boston.
  • A monthly stipend is provided to fellows, except those enrolled in the Executive Education Programs, to cover the cost of housing and other living expenses. Housing is usually in university graduate dormitories. (Please note that housing costs in the Boston/Cambridge area are extremely high, and the stipend only covers bare necessities.)
  • The monthly stipend must also be used to pay other expenses such as medical and dental insurance, medicines, taxes, food, winter clothing, books and supplies. Fellows are held personally responsible for the payment of all bills other than tuition fees and airfare.
  • Fellows should also be aware that their stipends will have a significant amount of taxes taken out before they receive the funds.

Application Procedure:



  • Submit transcripts from all post-secondary institutions you have attended. You may upload these or have them mailed directly.
  • Transcripts must show the grades and course titles for all your post-secondary coursework. Copies of diplomas are NOT required.



  • An academic essay and a personal statement must be submitted.
    • Academic Essay: Briefly describe an important issue  relevant to your field of interest and South Africa, where possible. Propose a theoretical framework or strategy to address this issue. Applicants seeking admission into the Special Student or Visiting Fellow GSAS Programs should use this academic essay to describe their research and attach a description of their relevant coursework. Minimum 500 words, Maximum 1000 words.
    • Personal Statement: Tell us something about yourself – in particular, why you wish to study at Harvard University and how doing so connects with what you have done in the past and what you plan to do in the future with your career in South Africa. Applicants seeking admission into the Special Student program should use this personal statement to explain how coursework and research opportunities at Harvard University will strengthen their doctoral work and teaching at their home institution. Minimum 250 words, Maximum 750 words.
  • The Academic Essay and the Personal Statement should be typed in a standard font and font size (10 to 12 point).  Essays should also be double-spaced.
  • Include your full name on the top of each page and your signature at the end of the Academic Essay and the Personal Statement.


  • Include a copy of your most recent resume/CV with your application.
  • APPLICATION TIMELINEApril 4, 2016: HSAFP applications DUE (at 11:59pm EST)
  • April – May 2016: Applications are reviewed by on-campus committee at Harvard University
  • Late May 2016: Applicants notified if they have been selected as for an interview
  • July 2016: Expected timing for interviews in South Africa
  • Late August 2016 : Interviewed candidates are notified if they have been selected as a Harvard South Africa Fellow finalist
  • September 2016 – January 2017 : Selected finalists apply directly to the Harvard program they are interested in attending
  • January – April 2017: Candidates typically hear about their admissions decision from the Harvard School to which they applied
  • Beginning July – August 2017 : Most Harvard South Africa Fellows’ academic programs at Harvard begin
  • May 2018: Fellows at Harvard for one-year programs complete their academic year at the University

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Harvard South Africa Fellowship Program (HSAFP)


  1. I am a qualified teacher who would love to study more in development studies as I think such a school as Harvard school can advance my skills to tackle the ever growing of educational needs, especially in rural areas where I am based!!

  2. Hi, my is phemelo am in grade 10 currently i am very passionate about studying law after matric and i would really like to study abroad. My first preferance is Harvard university i would really like to know what steps should i take to apply for 2018 do i apply this year, next year or……?

  3. Am highly impressed by your Programmes, especially those in the Health Sector where i major. I would like to be considered under your ‘Full International Scholarships Programme’ according to your Official Release at your Website. Thanking you so much well in advance.

  4. hello, am from south Sudan I would like appreciate your program hence I love to join your university to continue with my studies I have not yet obtained my degree due to civil war which erupted in juba across south sudan.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Ce site utilise Akismet pour réduire les indésirables. En savoir plus sur comment les données de vos commentaires sont utilisées.