Grants for scholars and experts


Grants for graduate students


Grants for English teaching assistantships


Grants for short-term research


2022 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Bulgaria

Grants for US Scholars and Professionals

Up to 5 awards per academic year are open to specialists in any field except for clinical medicine and dentistry. Awards are for 3 to 5 months. Opportunities are available for college and university faculty and administrators as well as for professionals, artists, journalists, scientists, lawyers, and independent scholars.


The Fulbright U.S. Student Award offers an opportunity for U.S. citizens holding at least a BA to conduct individually designed research, engage in civic initiatives or develop their talents in Bulgaria. MA/PhD candidates, young professionals and artists are encouraged to apply. Candidates do not need to currently be enrolled in a graduate program to be eligible.


Fulbright | America for Bulgaria Foundation English Teaching Assistantship

The program offers graduate students in all fields the opportunity to teach English in Bulgarian public schools or universities for one academic year. 

The Fulbright Specialist Program

The Fulbright Specialist Program (FSP) awards grants to qualified U.S. faculty and professionals, in select disciplines, to engage in short-term collaborative two- to six-week projects at eligible institutions in Bulgaria.

Country Description

A mountainous country of seven million people located in the heart of the Balkan Peninsula, Bulgaria boasts a rich archaeological heritage and vibrant artistic culture, including its unique folk music and dance traditions as well as contemporary literary and performance practices. Thanks to its striking natural landscape, rich agricultural roots, and four-season climate, Bulgaria is an increasingly popular destination for outdoor and culinary tourism.Bulgaria also has a strong ICT and start-up sector, based primarily in Sofia, and some Bulgarian companies have started receiving international recognition for their innovations. 

Bulgaria has a relatively homogenous majority population of Slavic-speakers who traditionally identify as Orthodox Christian; however, the country is also home to Turkish and Roma communities and has a sizeable Muslim minority (more than 10%). While Bulgarians are known for their warm hospitality, some communities may hold conservative views and may not have extensive experience interacting with foreigners.Younger Bulgarians often have solid levels of English-language competence thanks to access to digital and online resources, while older generations, who had limited access to English instruction under communism, may have studied Russian, German or French instead. 

Since the fall of communism in 1989, Bulgaria has been a parliamentary democracy, joining the EU in 2007. Although Bulgaria has the lowest standard of living in the EU and struggles with challenges such as emigration/brain-drain and rule-of-law issues, the country has nevertheless generally been politically and economically stable. All applicants are urged to consult the most recent State Department Country Report on Human Rights Practices, which offers the most exhaustive and up-to-date description of political, social and cultural trends in Bulgaria. 


I would absolutely recommend Bulgaria as a destination for your academic advancement on an exchange program. I can see so much hope and excitement for building a better Bulgaria, to keep the young and talented people here. There is also an open mind for people, for new ideas, for finding out what is working well in the US, what is working well in Bulgaria and how we can cooperate.

Alexandra White, Teacher of Business Administration. 2022 


“I am now interacting with colleagues from Bulgaria on a daily basis and if it hadn’t been for the Fulbright Program, I would never have met these people. The contacts we have built are indeed exciting; that is the main benefit for me, as well as the Fulbright attitude, that this is a cooperation and building of long-term relationships.”

Rebecca Singer, Public Health Professor, 2022

“The most important reason why I chose Bulgaria was that Fulbright Bulgaria Commission lays a focus on establishing speech and debate clubs and developing local communities. This is something that instantly appealed to me, because in high-school I was taking part in such a club and that was one of my favorite activities.” 

Jacob Pintar, English Assistant Teacher in Plovdiv, 2022 

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