Undergraduate Overseas Summer Research Awards

The Duke University Center for International & Global Studies (DUCIGS) provides funding for full-time Duke undergraduate students to complement their classwork with research experience in different social and cultural settings.

On average, DUCIGS makes ten awards of up to $1,000 each annually. A project can receive funding jointly from several Duke offices; however, students must apply separately to each competition for the same project. The total award for that project from all sources may not exceed the total amount indicated in the proposed budget you submit.  

Foreign Nationals: Be aware that your award will be assessed a 34% tax. A Form-1099 will be issued in December, which will enable you to file for its return at the start of the next calendar year.

 2019 Competition DEADLINE: Monday, February 25, 2019


Rising sophomores, juniors and seniors pursuing an overseas academic research project of a minimum of five weeks' duration qualify to apply for the Undergraduate Overseas Summer Awards.


Applicants must submit a proposal for a focused overseas academic research project of a minimum of five weeks' duration, which must be designed to further the student’s acquaintance with a particular country or world region. If you are planning a group project, each member of the group must apply individually, including application, supporting documentation and budget reflecting only your own research and costs, not those of the group.

All project proposals must be research-based; this competition is not intended to fund service-learning experiences or internships unless they are done in tandem with an independent overseas research-driven project. The service experience can be part of, but not principal to, the intended research. Your budget must reflect only those expenses associated with the research component; only travel and living expenses for the research period itself will be considered in the award amount.

Applicants should enlist a faculty sponsor with expertise in the student’s topic and intended world region. The sponsor will advise the student in preparing the application and developing a research program. Preparation might include research for the proposal, estimating costs and assessing the feasibility of the project. A sponsor's signature is required on your application.

Applicants are expected to seek additional funding at Duke and elsewhere, if necessary. In the case of multiple source requests for the same project, your entire budget must be reflected on each application, not just the portion that you are requesting from individual offices.

A completed application must include:

  • APPLICATION / Cover Sheet (PDF)
  • Three- to five-page, double-spaced project statement
  • One-page bibliography
  • One- to two-page, double-spaced autobiographical statement
  • Budget narrative
  • A letter of support* from your faculty sponsor and a second from an instructor who knows your scholarship
  • One original undergraduate transcript
  • Proof of International Travel Registration [ https://travel.duke.edu ]
  • Letter of support from overseas host institution, if applicable

*NOTE: Faculty should be encouraged to email their letters of reference as attachments, which should be sent to Nancy Hare Robbins. If you personally pick up these letters, they must be received in sealed envelopes with back-flap signed by the referee.

2019 Competition DEADLINE: Monday, February 25, 2019

A single original completed application package (NO staples, please) must be received by the campus deadline. 

Deliver to:
Nancy Hare Robbins
Duke University Center for International & Global Studies
John Hope Franklin Center, Room 105
2204 Erwin Road (@ Trent Drive), Duke University

Or mail to:
Nancy Hare Robbins
Duke University Center for International & Global Studies
Box 90404, Duke University
Durham NC 27708-0404

Please contact Nancy Hare Robbins for additional questions or information, including tips on choosing a research topic, selecting a project sponsor, building a travel budget, and creating a successful application.

ADDITIONAL Funding Sources: It is recommended that students look to other undergraduate competitions as well, to augment funding for their proposed research. These competitions include those sponsored by the Undergraduate Research Support Office (URS) (which also has on its website a large directory of undergrad funding sources); Asian/Pacific Studies Institute (APSI)Latin American & Caribbean Studies (CLACS), the Office of University Scholars and Fellows (OUSF), and the Program in Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies (GSFS), among many others.