How to Apply Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (Global UGRAD)?

The United States in partnership with other Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (Global UGRAD) countries extends its intercultural support in learning to outstanding and excellent students who want to go abroad and study. This program is being sponsored by the United States (US) Government which provides funds to those students who have excellent skills both academic and leadership to emerge in a diverse group of non-degree academic study in some United States Colleges and universities. This is open to students who came from either public or private college institutions.

Also Read: How to Apply PhilFrance DOST Scholarship Program

With the support of the Global UGRAD Exchange Program and the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the United States, they encourage student participants to apply to the said exchange program to have an opportunity to be exposed to US society, culture, and academic institutions as well as have the opportunity to become professional and globally competent students and in which they can be able to uphold their personal and professional skills development. Additionally, this program is a great opportunity for those eligible and deserving students to at least experience the learning life experiences of those students who want to study in the US which could lead them into holistic development and could be able to boost their experiences in learning.

This program is open to all aspiring Filipino students who wish to experience even once in their college education the exchange program overseas, especially in the United States. In like manner, this article will provide you with basic information on how to apply to the Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (Global UGRAD). Thus, allowing you to understand the said exchange program even more.

how to apply Global UGRAD global undergraduate exchange program

What is the Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (Global UGRAD)?

The Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (Global UGRAD) is an educational scholarship program of the US Government together with other organizations including the Global UGRAD countries that support excellent students to study for at least one semester in US colleges and universities wherein eligible applicants have the chance to expose themselves in global competitive society and culture of the United States. They will have an opportunity to experience their academic learning experiences which will boost their academic and professional development.

This privilege is given to a student that has no experience and wanted to go and study in the US. Host institutions will be the ones to handle the student participants to provide academic instructions and other learning activities that the student must indulge in, wherein students are not allowed to choose the host institutions. Provided, the students will fall under the most appropriate host institution based on their chosen learning preferences wherein students must be required to participate in their academic learning and cultural activities. If the participants of the said program fail to meet the academic requirements of the US University and the Global UGRAD Program may result in the dismissal of the financial support of the program and they will be sent back to their home countries’ universities.

Participating Countries (subject to change)

  1.  Albania
  2.  Algeria
  3.  Armenia
  4.  Azerbaijan
  5.  Bahrain
  6.  Bangladesh
  7.  Belarus
  8.  Bosnia
  9.  Herzegovina
  10.  Brunei
  11.  Burma (Myanmar)
  12.  Cambodia
  13.  China
  14.  Costa Rica
  15.  Dominican Republic
  16.  Egypt
  17.  El Salvador
  18.  Ethiopia
  19.  Georgia
  20.  Guatemala
  21.  Haiti
  22.  Honduras
  23.  India
  24.  Indonesia
  25.  Israel
  26.  Jordan
  27.  Kazakhstan
  28.  Kenya
  29.  Kosovo
  30.  Kuwait
  31.  Kyrgyzstan
  32.  Laos
  33.  Lebanon
  34.  Malawi
  35.  Malaysia
  36.  Maldives
  37.  Mauritania
  38.  Moldova
  39.  Mongolia
  40.  Montenegro
  41.  Morocco
  42.  Mozambique
  43.  Nepal
  44.  Nicaragua
  45.  Niger
  46.  North Macedonia
  47.  Pacific Islands (Fiji, Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu)
  48.  Palestinian Territories (Gaza and West Bank)
  49.  Panama
  50.  Paraguay
  51.  Philippines
  52.  Russia
  53.  Saudi Arabia
  54.  Serbia
  55.  Singapore
  56.  South Korea
  57.  Sri Lanka
  58.  Tajikistan
  59.  Thailand
  60.  Timor Leste
  61.  Turkmenistan
  62.  Ukraine
  63.  Uzbekistan
  64.  Venezuela
  65.  Vietnam
  66.  Zimbabwe


This scholarship is open to all undergraduate students who wish to study abroad where there are greater benefits that the eligible applicants can acquire. These are as follows:

  1. One semester scholarship for outstanding students of the UGRAD countries.
  2. Participants can stay in the school dormitory and other on-campus housing facilities together with other American peers.
  3. Can participate in the twenty hours of community service.
  4. Enhance students’ academic knowledge, and cross-cultural learning experiences for their learning and professional development skills.
  5. Participants will have an opportunity to establish a social network in the US local communities.


The following is the list of qualification standards that the applicants must meet to be qualified for the Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (Global UGRAD):

  1. Must be a citizen of a Global UGRAD participating country and currently residing in that country during the time of application.
  2. Eighteen (18) years old and above.
  3. Must be completed an undergraduate study for at least one semester before submitting to the Global Undergraduate Exchange Program.
  4. Must be an undergraduate student with good standing both in education and curricular standing at any authorized university whether it is a public or a private institution where the student enrolled in.
  5. Must have at least one semester remaining at their home university when the Global UGRAD program is complete.
  6. Must not be considered as graduating students of his/her university. The Global UGRAD program cannot be the final academic term of the student’s undergraduate study.
  7. Must be able to start their studies in the United States in August or January (chosen participants cannot postpone their studies)
  8. Must be fluent in English in communication both written and spoken (there would be an English language training for some finalists).
  9. Eligible to receive and maintain the United State student exchange visa (J-1) that is required for the program.
  10. Must be committed to returning to their country home right after the program finish.
  11. Individuals that have dual citizenship whether they are current US residents or presently studying in the US are not eligible to apply for the said educational exchange program.


This program is intended for all undergraduate student applicants and requires them to submit the following list of documents before the schedule of the scholarship application closes to be qualified for the program.

  1. A duly accomplished online application form.
  2. Two (2) recommendation letters come from authorized persons either from the teachers/professors, principals, guidance counselors, or other persons that have the authority to introduce the applicants very well without having no biases.
  3. Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score report.
  4. Responses to essay prompt including the personal statement that is a part of the online application.
  5. Copy of biographic and signature pages of your passport.
  6. Official transcripts for years that the participants studied have an English translation wherein they must provide grade equivalence that is being used by the university.

How to Process UGRAD Exchange Program

The followings are the step-by-step guide and instructions that you can use as your basis to apply for Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (Global UGRAD).

Step 1: Interested applicants can apply online through this link

Step 2: Sign in to continue filling up the information needed for your application. If you don’t have an account, kindly make one by clicking the sign-up button and filling in the required information, including your Email and password, and click sign up.

Step 3: Create a profile and get started. In creating a profile, you must fill up some personal information including name, birth date, and email address. Then, click ‘create a profile’.

Step 4: Find the 2023 UGRAD Application and open it. Read the information carefully and kindly fill up the information needed by clicking and answering the right information in the application portal.

Step 5: Submit other scanned documents in a pdf form. If you are done doing it, review it carefully, and after finalizing it click submit and wait for the scholarship response.

Important Reminders

Attached hereof are some important points that aspiring applicants need to remember before applying for the said exchange program.

  1. US citizens and permanent residents of the United States are not eligible to apply.
  2. If you are currently living, studying, or working outside of your home country are not allowed in the said program.
  3. Local personnel employed by American embassies abroad or US government employees are also disqualified for one year following the end of their job with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)
  4. Immediate family members for like example the spouse or children that have family members who are US employees are also ineligible for one year following the termination of employment.
  5. The request for the participant’s transcripts should be done as soon as possible because they will not be going to change or add other personal information after the deadline for submission. For the convenience of the applicant’s updated transcripts, they must provide English translations once they are on the final list of alternate finalists.
  6. Be patient and consistent most importantly in the application process.

Video: Step-by-step Global Undergraduate Exchange Program Application

Check out the video provided above as it will give you detailed information about the guide on how to apply to the Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (Global UGRAD). Additionally, this video is helpful, especially to those aspiring applicants who wish to study in an exchange program abroad, particularly in the United States. Aside from that, the video will allow you to explore the application portal of the UGRAD Program.

Another video is found below which tackles the application and selection procedures related to the said exchange international program as well as some pro tips when you apply for the said exchange program.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the schedule of the application and when can I apply for this program?

The Global UGRAD prospective student application usually starts on November 1 until December 15 eastern time while the host institution application usually starts on November 1 and it closes on January 31 eastern time based considering that it is an American-based schedule.

2. What is the J-1 visa means?

A J-1 visa is an exchange visitor visa for an educational and cultural exchange program that is stated by the Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. It is designed for visitors to at least visit other countries whether they are a student, scholars, trainees, interns, teachers, professors, research assistants, or e even international visitors.

3. Is it a need to submit the TOEFL scores immediately right after the application?

The said exchange program did not require the student applicants to submit the TOEFL scores immediately right after the application. If they are eligible to be a participant in the said program and they pass the initial screening, they can be able to take the TOEFL test which is offered free by the Commission.

4. Are exchange participants allowed to work while they are in the US?

Somehow, the program allows the students to work provided some limitations based on their J-1 visa. They will only allow the student to work jobs related to their major field of study that can work with their practical training.

5. Is a Global UGRAD Program fully funded?

The Global UGRAD Program is a fully funded exchange program that allows students to empower knowledge and understanding of the academic and cultural background of the US. Its goal is to boost global connectivity of the different countries including their institutions and universities provided that the student will go to pay their educational fees in their home countries.

6. Is there an age requirement to be an exchange student?

Interested applicants must be at least 18 years old to qualify for the said exchange program. Aside from that, there are still a lot of eligibility requirements you have to meet to proceed with your application. To view the full list of eligibility requirements, check out the ‘Qualifications’ section above.

7. Is this program open to all students from any schools or universities in the Philippines?

The program is open to all Filipino students as long as their administration allows the said exchange program. Hence, if you wish to take advantage of this opportunity to explore the US and learn more about its culture while studying for a semester, you may apply to the said exchange program as long as you have met all the eligibility requirements.

8. I have dual citizenship. Can I still apply for the said exchange program?

Take note that this program does not apply to interested students who have dual citizenship, particularly if it’s US citizenship. This is one of their requisites thus if you wish to apply for an exchange program, try to look for another exchange program that does not have this restriction.

9. Is fluency in the English language a requisite?

Interested applicants must be fluent and proficient in the English language as this is the language mostly used in the United States. It does not require a level of fluency or proficiency as long as you could speak fluently, understand, and write the said language, you are eligible to apply for the said exchange program.

10. How long is the duration of the said exchange program? Can we choose the school or university where we wish to study?

You’ll get to study in one of the universities in the United States for one (1) semester only. While studying, all your expenses are fully funded and covered by the said program as long as you do not violate any of its terms and conditions that are subject to disqualification or termination from the said exchange program. Additionally, you cannot choose the school or university you’ll be studying at. You’ll be notified once you became a grantee of the said exchange program.


Hence, this is the process of applying for the Global Undergraduate Exchange Program that aims to support excellent students to study for at least one semester in US colleges and universities and have the chance to get exposed to the global competitive society and culture of the United States.

The application process is simple and interested student applicants can apply online. But, before that, you must meet first all the eligibility requirements mentioned in the article – view the full list under the ‘Qualifications’ section. If you think you are qualified, provide and complete all the required documents and process your application. More importantly, fill out your application completely, correctly, and honestly. Do not falsify any information in your application as this may affect the status of your application and hinder it from being successful.

If you wish to apply for this program, read more about the eligibility requirements as well as the documentary requirements mentioned in this article above before jumping to the application process to brief yourself first. You may also visit their official FB page using this link for updates and if you have some issues and concerns, you can also send them a private message. Also, if you need to know more about them you can visit their official website at