The Benefits and Opportunities of Fellowships in Higher Education

Spread the love

One of the ways students can access funding for their higher education is through access to fellowship programs. Like scholarships, grants, assistantships, and other forms of financial aid, the fellowship allows students the opportunity to fund their education in universities abroad and also have the opportunity to attend various mentorship programs that will be instrumental to the success of their chosen career path.

Additionally, fellowships are often and mostly applicable in the post-graduate setting even though undergraduate schools also employ the term too. Fellowships often provide multiple years of funding for the awardee and it is typically merit-based although there are other forms of fellowship opportunities available. 

Get Up to $100,000 Student Loan for Your Master in US or Canada - See if you are eligible

Got Admission to Study in US or Canada? See if you are eligible for international student loan

Before we explore the different benefits students stand to gain and the opportunities available in becoming a fellowship member, subscribe to our newsletter for more updates. 

Types of Fellowships 

Like scholarships, different types of fellowship opportunities are available for post-graduate students to take advantage of. Some of them include: 

Read also: 20 Fellowships In Australia For Graduate International Students – Open Every Year

1. Academic Fellowships

Academic fellowships are applicable and are streamlined to fellowship areas. People who want to major in the academic line can look out and apply for these fellowships. The three types of academic fellowships opportunities include: 

a. Graduate Fellowships

Graduate fellowships often cover the applicant’s graduate school expenses. Fees like tuition, health insurance, academic conferences, and living expenses are some of the expenses the fellowship covers. Additionally, it is also open to Master’s and doctoral students. 

2. Research Fellowships

Also, research fellowships are targeted at providing funding opportunities for research-related activities. They are open to either undergraduates, graduates, scholars, or scientists. 

 3. Postdoctoral fellowships

Additionally, postdoctoral fellowships are strictly open to individuals who have completed their postdoctoral degree (Ph.D.) and who want more time and resources to further their research. Scholars in this field often explore narrow academic disciplines to become experts in the field. 

4. Medical fellowships

On the other hand, medical fellowships are open to medical practitioners who have completed a residency in the medical field. Doctors seeking further training to become experts in a specific specialty can apply for medical fellowships. 

2. Professional Fellowships

Unlike academic fellowships, professional fellowships offer awardees the opportunity to develop themselves in their chosen careers. Oftentimes, they are synonymous with full-time jobs that come with payment and other benefits attached while professionals get to work in the organization. 

Additionally, they might sometimes avail funding to help graduates pursue a self-designed professional project, attend conferences, and have access to mentorship. Also, professional fellowships can come in different forms to include: 

  • Fellowships for early-career professionals and recent graduates who have up to 5 years of work experience. 
  • Fellowships for mid-career and executive professionals for professionals with up to 10 years or more work experience. 
  • Summer Fellowships are open to students or recent graduates and provide internship opportunities for them to contribute to their growth and experience. 

Read also: 20 Fellowships In The USA For Graduate International Students – Open Every Year

Benefits and Opportunities Fellowships provide in higher education

Having examined the meaning and types of fellowship opportunities available, there is no doubt that there are many benefits and opportunities available when scholars and professionals apply for and qualify for fellowship opportunities. Some of the benefits available include:

1. Development of professional skills and leadership abilities.

Fellowship opportunities provide its beneficiaries the ability to hone their professional and leadership capabilities. When working on a research project, or working in an organization, you have a clearly defined goal and a target you want to meet up with. Due to the external support, you are motivated to put in your all to achieve the goals. Also, exposure to a new environment, a new workplace, and different people avails you the opportunity to learn from others as they learn from you too. 

2. Clarity on your career path

Another benefit that can be enjoyed as a result of access to fellowship opportunities is the clarity you gain in defining your career path. Working in a professional setting opens you to see different perspectives and opportunities in your career space. You will be able to identify your strengths and weaknesses and where you best fit in to be effective. This realization will help you when you finally enter the labor market. 

3. Development of an international professional network. 

Having a robust professional network is important for a professional seeking to thrive in the industry. One of the benefits that can be enjoyed from fellowships is the access to just this. You’ll have the opportunity to network and meet with people in your chosen field. Your interaction will help broaden your knowledge and widen your perspective on different issues as it relates to your profession. 

4. Experience for future job opportunities

The experience garnered from the benefits attached to fellowships will equip you for future job opportunities. Both professional and soft skills are some of the skills you’d gain when from fellowships, especially professional ones. This will help you thrive when you finally transition to the labor market full-time. 

5. Opportunity to learn and grow

Fellowship opportunities provide professionals the opportunity to learn from other peers and like-minded people and to grow at the same pace. You get to rub minds with people in your field and proffer solutions to difficult problems to the end that it enhances your growth and the growth of your industry. 

Tips on how to successfully apply for a postgraduate fellowship.

Additionally, like scholarships, you must ensure that there are no mistakes in your application form. Fellowship memberships are often based on merit and are also as competitive as scholarships, so it is important that you properly cross your T’s and dot your It’s to position yourself appropriately. Below are some tips that can help you to ace your fellowship application process:

Read also: Scholarships For Students Pursuing Careers In Social Sciences

1. Get expert advice

When taking a new path, it is often advisable to seek help where necessary to prevent mistakes. In this light, it is therefore important that you speak to people you know who have benefitted from the Fellowships you desire to apply to. Their expert knowledge will help guide you through the process to ensure you do not make mistakes.

2. Don’t make it about yourself

Also, since the application questions might include some personal questions, ensure that you do not make it solely about yourself. Ensure that your personal goals align with those of the fellowship organization and structure your essay in that line. One of the mistakes people make is seeing things in the light of themselves and their personal goals. Like a job interview, ensure you don’t make it all about “me”. Rather, put them in mind and align their goals with yours. 

3. Define a niche

Additionally, when we examined the types of fellowship earlier, we saw that some of them favor people who have a clearly defined path and want to make an exploration of those parts that aren’t prominent or talked about. If you’re looking forward to applying for a research fellowship, define your niche. Pick a niche and be thorough in your proposal so that the panel will see how interested you are and the efforts you have already started putting into it. 

4. Embrace Storytelling

Storytelling is everything. The way you tell your story is the way people will receive and interpret it. So, if you tell your story poorly without being convincing enough, you’re bound to receive that same response. So, make sure you embrace storytelling in your application. Your introduction should rouse the reader’s interest.  Additionally, get experts to help you read and make corrections and ensure that there are no errors whether grammatical or otherwise before you finally submit your application. 

Start with us

Do you desire to start a career in STEM? The first thing is to pursue a degree in STEM. Wondering how to go about pursuing a postgraduate degree in STEM courses abroad? We can guide you through your journey and make your dreams come true. Reach out to us at EdXtra to access opportunities that will help you on your journey

Enrolling in the top universities in the world can increase your chances with employers. Unfortunately, it can be quite expensive to study abroad due to the current economic crisis. But this shouldn’t limit you as there are other options you can explore to enhance your career. 

MPower Finance and Prodigy Finance are some of the best student loan providers for international students. They also do not require any cosigner or collateral before application. At EdXtra Associates, we can help you with your loan application process. We also provide educational consultancy services for international students to help make your journey easier and faster. You can reach out to us, as we’d love to guide you through this journey.