Fall campus

Fulbright-Idman Grant

The Fulbright-Idman Grant provides Finnish students an opportunity to pursue a master's degree in the U.S. and expand their horizons through cultural immersion. Senior secondary school (lukio) graduates from the Tampere City Region who have completed a bachelor's degree by the application deadline are eligible to apply for this grant.
The application round for the academic year 2025-26 is now closed. The next application cycle will open in February 2025 for the academic year 2026-27.

The Purpose of This Program

The purpose of the grant is to enable the awardees to carry out master's-level studies at U.S. universities and at the same time act as ambassadors for the Fulbright Finland Foundation programs, Finland, and their home institution, and to share their culture and contribute to the relations between Finland and the United States. Read more about the background and history of the Fulbright Finland Foundation programs.

You can apply for the grant program if you plan to complete a master's degree in the United States and are a senior secondary school graduate (lukio) from the Tampere City Region (Tampere, Kangasala, Lempäälä, Nokia, Orivesi, Pirkkala, or Ylöjärvi).

The Fulbright Finland Foundation works together with the Idman Foundation to increase U.S. study opportunities for Finns. The Idman Foundation was founded on the will of Minister Karl Gustaf Idman (Secretary of State) in 1962. The foundation grants scholarships to senior secondary school graduates from the Tampere City Region to continue their studies at universities in the U.S.

Read about the first Fulbright-Idman Grant recipient, Eero Kaarsalo, and how he sees the grant as an enabler (in Finnish).

Program Benefits

We provide you with a wide range of benefits and support services to prepare you for your upcoming journey:

  • Grant: The grant will be provided for the whole duration of the master's degree studies in the U.S. based on real costs. The grant can be up to USD 70 000 per academic year.  
  • Help in the U.S. university application process including support for locating suitable universities with funding opportunities: This highly recommended, free-of-charge service helps you find U.S. universities that best match your specific academic and professional goals, as well as provide opportunities for receiving financial support. In addition, the service includes waivers for U.S. university application fees and TOEFL and GRE test vouchers. This service is provided by the Foundation’s U.S. program partner, Institute of International Education (IIE). Read more about the Placement Service on Fulbright Online.
  • Personal advising and guidance services: Supporting you before and during the grant term.
  • Orientation training: Extensive orientation training to U.S. culture, the higher education system, and details for the upcoming Fulbright period, including online materials, virtual meetings, and an orientation day in Helsinki.
  • Networking opportunities: Enabling you to build connections professionally and internationally in Finland and the U.S. As a Fulbright grantee, you are provided an opportunity to participate in the Fulbright enrichment activities (seminars, events, and workshops) allowing you to connect with fellow grantees from around the world as well as local community members. In addition, you will be joining a global network of 400 000+ alumni as well as the Fulbright Finland alumni community.
  • Free visa: J-1 visa for you, and J-2 visa for family members who travel with you.

The benefits of joining a Fulbright program go beyond the grant term. Read the full list of benefits.

Support for Grantees with Disabilities

Extra funding support is available for grantees with disabilities. If you have a disability that would cause additional costs for the grant term, contact the Foundation to discuss reasonable accommodations. Email the Foundation ([email protected]) by the grant application deadline your self-assessment with a description of the disability and the specific accommodations requested.

Please note that disclosing the need for disability accommodation does not affect the review and selection process.

Visit to DC
Eino Rautanen (second from left), 2021-22 ASLA-Fulbright Graduate Grant grantee, visited Washington D.C. with other Fulbrighters.

Watch our online Applicant Event recording to learn more about opportunities to study in the U.S. You can also look through the slides from the event.

Application Requirements

Ambassadorial Requirements

  • Cultural ambassador of Finland: You are motivated to learn about other cultures and to share your own. The grantees contribute to the enhancement of Finland-U.S. relations by acting as citizen ambassadors of their home country and promoting cultural understanding.
  • Representing a Fulbright Finland Foundation grant program: You can seek additional funding for your time in the U.S. but you are primarily a representative of the Fulbright Finland Foundation grant program you are selected for.
  • Motivated to learn and share: You are motivated to develop your field of specialization and share your knowledge and learning during and after the grant term. After the grant term, you are interested in engaging as an alum of the Foundation.

Academic Requirements

  • Tampere City Region senior secondary school (lukio) graduate: You have graduated from a senior secondary school in the Tampere City Region (Tampere, Kangasala, Lempäälä, Nokia, Orivesi, Pirkkala, or Ylöjärvi).
  • A bachelor’s degree: You have completed your bachelor's degree in a university or university of applied sciences by the end of the application period. 
    • If, for administrative reasons, you have not obtained the degree certificate but have completed all courses and the thesis required for your degree by the last day of the application period, you are eligible to apply for the grant program. Please include an informal certificate provided by your institution as proof of the completion of your degree requirements. This certificate needs to state when you will obtain the official degree certificate. Once you receive the official certificate, please email a copy of it to us as soon as possible.
  • Start of studies: Your full-time studies in the U.S. begin in the fall of 2025.
  • Study objective: You plan to complete a master's degree in the U.S. This grant is primarily for candidates seeking their first master's degree.
  • Willingness to apply to multiple universities: At the time of applying, you do not have to have a place of study in the U.S. Yet, you are prepared to apply to several universities you would like to study at. Your university list needs to be balanced and include a backup plan. You will receive help in creating a balanced university list.
  • Accredited institution: The U.S. universities you apply to must be accredited by a recognized accrediting agency or association as recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education. You can check institution accreditations on the Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs webpage.
  • All fields of study are welcome: Your studies during the grant term are in or close to your own field. Only studies or research including patient care or other patient contact are excluded.

Visa Requirements

  • J-1 Visa: You will travel to the U.S. with an exchange visitor visa (J-1 visa) organized by the Fulbright program.
  • Finnish citizenship and residence: You must be a Finnish citizen. You cannot have Finnish-American dual citizenship or a permanent residence permit in the U.S.
    • The grant cannot be given to an applicant who already resides in the U.S. You have to start your studies in the U.S. with the Fulbright-Idman Grant.
  • Previous stay in the U.S. (for both the applicant and their family members): Please contact the Foundation when writing your application if you or your family members have visited the U.S. with a J-1 or J-2 visa within the past 24 months. Limitations on receiving a new visa due to the 12-month bar and 24-month bar regulations might apply.
  • Two-year home country residency requirement:  A grantee cannot apply for a work permit or an immigration visa to the U.S. immediately after the end of their grant term. One has to reside in their home country/country of residence for two years after the grant period is over to get a work permit or an immigration visa to the U.S. (the country of residence is considered to be the country where the grantee has resided permanently before leaving for the U.S.). However, regular tourist visits and, for example, studying in the U.S. is possible. Read more about this requirement on the U.S. Department of State webpage.

Application Instructions and Tips

Please note that it is the applicant’s responsibility to make sure all required items are submitted by the application deadline.

Application Instructions

  • Application: Submit your online application here: https://apply.iie.org/ffsp2025
  • Application instructions: Please follow these application instructions while filling in the application.
  • Application checklist: This is a mandatory item to be submitted along with your application. Please utilize the checklist to make sure you have attached all necessary documents to the application. Download the checklist.

The Selection Process 

You can learn more about the selection process on the following pages:

  • The selection process
  • Evaluation Criteria: The applications are evaluated according to the Fulbright Finland Foundation’s evaluation criteria. In addition, the following Idman Foundation’s criteria is applied: ”When selecting the scholarship recipients, the Idman Foundation emphasizes the student's ability to network and influence the future of Pirkanmaa as well as the importance of the scholarship for the student's own development.”

Instructions and Tips for Required Documents

The following tips and guidance will help you in preparing your application:


As a grantee, it is important that you are committed to the program schedule listed below:

WhatWhenMore information
Info Session for Graduate Applicants to the U.S. (online)March 7, 2024
In this event, U.S. professors and alumni give you advice on selecting suitable U.S. universities and graduate programs or hosts for research visits as well as shed light on the U.S. university application process. You will also receive tips for applying to the Fulbright programs.
Application deadlineMay 19, 2024 
Interview invitations emailed to the selected applicants Min. one week before the interviews  
InterviewsAugust 13-14, 2024Interviews are held predominantly online.
Final selection results publishedMid-September 2024 
Taking the language and aptitude tests if needed (e.g. GRE, GMAT, TOEFL)Immediately after the results are published or earlierDepending on your major and your choices of universities, and the deadlines of those universities.
Orientation training Late September 2024-May 2025We provide self-study tools and online and in-person training sessions for you to prepare for your upcoming year. Please see the details below.
Fall orientation session and American Voices seminar in TurkuOctober 11-12, 2024Planning for the Fulbright term and guidance on the next steps. Participation in the seminar and opportunity to network with other grantees in your program and current U.S. Fulbrighters in Finland. The Foundation will reimburse the travel and accommodation costs for grantees living outside Turku.
Pre-Departure Webinar March/April 2025Online training on the next steps for preparing for your stay in the U.S. and meeting with your program-specific cohort.
Pre-Departure Orientation Day and Award Ceremony in HelsinkiMid-May, 2025Training event for all the Foundation's grantees for the academic year 2025-26. The Foundation will reimburse grantees' travel costs.
The introductory orientation courses in the U.S. August 2025Opportunity to meet fellow Fulbright grantees from around the world and familiarize oneself with U.S. culture and higher education. The courses are voluntary (no accommodation costs are involved, and a travel grant will be awarded for the travels within the U.S.).
Studies in the U.S. beginAugust/September 2025 
First grant installmentSeptember 1, 2025 
Second grant installmentJanuary 2, 2026 

Study Experiences in the U.S.

Take a look at the stories and video interviews of previous Finnish Fulbright grantees.

Why Fulbright Matters Now More Than Ever (Fulbright Finland News Magazine 2019)

  • Miika Tomi, 2015-16 ASLA-Fulbright Graduate grantee

The Power of Fulbright Community (Fulbright Finland Foundation News Magazine 2022)

  • Olli Siitonen, 2021-22 ASLA-Fulbright Graduate grantee

From Michigan to Namibia (Fulbright Finland Foundation blog 2022)

  • Siiri Sinnemäki, 2021-22 ASLA-Fulbright Graduate grantee

What is the Fulbright Finland Foundation?

The Fulbright Finland Foundation is a private, independent, not-for-profit organization based in Helsinki, Finland. The Foundation’s aim is

  • to promote a wider exchange of knowledge and professional talents through educational contacts between Finland and the United States, and
  • to support the internationalization of education and research in Finland, and help U.S. and Finnish institutions create linkages.

What Makes the Fulbright Finland Foundation Programs Unique?

  • In addition to the grant, the Fulbright Finland Foundation offers the grantees several additional benefits and free support services, as well as access to a global, multi-professional network.
  • We are looking for applicants who want to impact the future and to make a difference – applicants who want to facilitate positive change, develop and advance their own profession or discipline, and find solutions to national and international challenges in their field.
  • The grantees also act as ambassadors for the Fulbright Finland Foundation, their home country, and their home organization and, in this way, do their part in sharing their home country and culture and contributing to the relations between Finland and the U.S.