Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Program for International Teachers

Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Program for International Teachers

For Greek primary and secondary school educators who hold full-time teaching positions in any subject. Primary and secondary level library media specialists, guidance counselors, curriculum specialists, special education coordinators, and other educators including administrators who work with primary and/or secondary students at least fifty percent of their time may also apply.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020 - Friday March 27, 2020
No applications will be accepted beyond March 27, 2020 at midnight EET

The Fulbright Foundation in Greece will award up to two grants to outstanding Greek primary and secondary-level school educators to attend the 2021 Distinguished Awards in Teaching Program. The Fulbright DAI brings international primary and secondary teachers to the United States for a semester-long program beginning in January 2021 to pursue individual or group projects, audit courses for professional development at a host university, and observe and share their expertise with teachers and students at the host university and local primary and secondary schools. This four- to five-month professional development program, held at one of 3 U.S. universities, provides approximately 54 international teachers with a unique opportunity to develop greater expertise in their subject areas, enhance their teacher skills, increase their knowledge about the United States, and complete an individual or group project. Faculty advisors will guide the participants in the refinement and implementation of their projects. Activities include academic coursework, leadership training, instructional technology seminars, and opportunities to observe, co-teach, and share expertise in U.S. elementary and secondary schools.

Quick Facts

  • Fulbright Distinguished Teachers support people-to-people diplomacy throughout their time in the United States, in U.S. host classrooms and communities.
  • All participants have opportunities to observe, co-teach, and share their expertise in U.S. elementary and secondary schools.
  • With a special focus on intensive professional development, all Fulbright Distinguished Teachers complete an inquiry project during their time in the United States.
  • Participants collaborate with their peers as part of a professional learning community on their inquiry projects to develop educational materials, workshops, or other resources to meet an educational need in their home country.


  • Promote mutual understanding between teachers, their schools, and communities in the United States and abroad by building teachers’ and students’ global competence, and by sharing educational best practices internationally.
  • Provide professional development to enhance educators’ expertise in their disciplines and furnish them with a deeper understanding of best practices in education.
  • Contribute to improving education in participating countries by preparing participants to serve as educational leaders who are equipped to apply and share their experience and skills with their colleagues and students upon returning home.

Project Activities

Educator training: Fulbright Distinguished Teachers take part in an intensive semester-long professional development program at a U.S. university. The curriculum includes academic coursework, leadership training, and instructional technology seminars.
Inquiry projects: Each participant will complete an individual or group project relevant to their education practice. Past projects covered topics such as current methodologies for teaching math, science, music, visual arts, performing arts, and English as a second language; working with special needs students; promoting civic engagement or service learning; environmental education; school management and leadership; and others that meet a critical need in the candidate's home country.
Field experience: Fulbright Distinguished Teachers are actively engaged with US schools. They are given opportunities to observe, co-teach, and share their expertise, building collaborative, lasting connections with teachers and students.
Best practice exchange: Fulbright Distinguished Teachers study and observe international best practices in education. They also share professional expertise with educators and students in the United States.
Civic and cultural activities: Fulbright Distinguished Teachers participate in US cultural activities such as performances, sporting events, visits to US homes, board of education meetings, and trips to notable historical sites.

The program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, and is administered by IREX.

  • Greek citizenship and residency. Candidates with dual citizenship (U.S./Greek) or permanent residence in the United States are not eligible.
  • Applicants who have in the past five to eight years traveled to the U.S. for exchange programs such as the Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (TEA), International Leaders in Education Program (ILEP), Study of the United States Institutes (SUSI) or International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) would need additional justification as to why they should be selected to return to the U.S. for the Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Program for International Teachers.
  • A bachelor’s degree from a recognized Greek institution of higher education.
  • Assignment in the Greek public school system at the primary and secondary education level.
  • Full-time employment or a combination of positions that add up to full-time equivalence.
  • At least 50 percent of teaching to the local (not expatriate) population as part of the full-time employment.
  • Minimum of five years of full-time professional teaching experience or similar level.
  • Evidence of leadership in the school or region.
  • Potential for developing long-term linkages between U.S. and home country education institutions and schools.
  • Preparedness for an intensive 4-month U.S.-based training program with very limited free time for personal travel or sightseeing.
  • Willingness to work and live collaboratively with international peers to foster a positive learning community.
  • Articulated ideas and ability to express ideas clearly and effectively.
  • Excellent command of the English language.
  • Preference will be given to applicants who are early to mid-career.
  • Priority will be given to applicants with virtually no prior experience in the United States.
  • Preference will be given to applicants who have not previously received a Fulbright grant.
  • Priority will be given to candidates who have firm plans to enhance, update or develop courses and/or educational materials with a U.S. studies focus or component.

The program is fully funded, with all participant costs covered, including:

  • Academic program fees, domestic travel, ground transportation for school visits during the program, housing and meal arrangements, incidental expenses, baggage and technology allowances.
  • Round-trip airfare for international travel from your hometown to destination.
  • A welcome program in Washington D.C.
  • Limited health and accident insurance (for recipient only). All participants will receive the Department of State's health insurance coverage (A+SPE) of $100,000 with $25 co-pay per medical visit, $75 co-pay per emergency entry or hospitalization for the duration of the program. Pre-existing conditions are not covered.
  • Pre-departure orientation.
  • Participation in the Annual Awards ceremony.
  • Fulbright Certificate of Award.
  • J-1 Exchange Visitor Visa sponsorship.
  • Membership in the online global community for all participants of U.S. government sponsored exchange programs (such as the Fulbright program).
  • Invitations for Participation in Outreach and Train the Trainers Workshops.
  • Opportunities to compete for small grants awards for essential teaching materials, to offer follow-on training for other teachers, collaborative projects between participating American schools, and other activities that build on the exchange experience.

  • Submission of a complete application package to the Greek Program Coordinator at the Fulbright Foundation in Athens is mandatory. A first evaluation and selection will take place at the Foundation prior to the interviews, based on the requirements and aims of the Fulbright DAI program.
  • Interviews are conducted in English and are mandatory. SKYPE or email interviews will not be considered. A Fulbright Selection Committee will interview shortlisted candidates, in person, on a specific date. Shortlisted candidates will be informed of their interview appointment (time and date) with the Selection Committee by email. Interviews take place at the Fulbright Foundation in Athens.
  • Candidates will be informed of their nomination status on the day immediately following the end of the interview cycle. Recommended candidates’ applications will be reviewed by a committee of educational experts in the U.S. who will make the final selection.
  • Participants are expected to complete the entire four-month professional development program, to attend all activities and to complete their project.
  • Children and spouses may accompany but the related expenses and arrangements are the responsibility of the grantee.
  • The focus of the program is on issues in teaching rather than educational administration.
  • Travel arrangements will be made in agreement with the Foundation and the program organizers. Participants will be given the option of traveling after the end of their program during the 30-day grace period of the J-1 visa and provided they take care of all expenses and arrangement including additional health insurance coverage.
  • Fulbright grant recipients must travel on a J-1 visa sponsored by the Fulbright Program. It is a condition of the visa that, after completion of the academic program, scholars must return to Greece and reside there for two years before being eligible to immigrate or apply for permanent residence or a work permit in the United States. The purpose of the two-year home residency requirement is to ensure that exchange visitors return to their home country and fulfill the exchange objectives of the Fulbright Program to broaden and strengthen mutual understanding between Greece and the United States.

Once submitted, your application form will be automatically available to the Fulbright Foundation for review. You will receive a confirmation email in the week following your submission.

The Fulbright office in Athens must receive your completed application by Friday, March 13, 2020, including the following documents:

  • Fulbright online application form;
  • Copy of your Bachelor's degree or other degrees earned (in pdf. format, max 2 MB per file) with English translations. Transcripts are not required.
  • Institutional Support and Reference Form to be completed by your school director / supervisor*;
  • Leave Approval Form to be completed by the Regional Directorate*.

* Applicants may initially seek approval from their school to confirm its support for a leave request in the event they are awarded. The Regional Directorate will not approve leave until grant documents can be provided and we advise applicants to upload the Leave Approval Form blank until further notice.

Please do not hesitate to contact the Greek Program Coordinator for questions or additional documentation / instructions.

Greek Program Coordinator
The Fulbright Foundation
T 210 7241 811/2, ext. 3

The application form will be made available from January 14 through March 13, 2020.


Tuesday, January 14, 2020 – Friday, March 27, 2020

January 14, 2020– March 27, 2020

Application period
All applicants must submit a complete package of requested documents

Friday, March 27, 2020 at midnight

Application deadline

March 30 – April 10, 2020

Evaluation and first selection

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to the Fulbright office

Thursday, April 30, 2020

Notification of results

August / September 2020

Notification of final selection and placement

November / December 2020

Pre-Departure Orientation
Grantees are invited to the Foundation on the day of their U.S. Embassy visa appointment and interview

January 2021 – May 2021 (4 months)

Grant implementation period

June 2021

Attendance is required

June 2021

Debriefing Session
at the Fulbright Athens office upon completion of the grant

Throughout the year

Outreach and Train the Trainers Programs
Alumni will be invited to outreach programs to support potential candidates and share their experience with other professionals. Programs can take place at any time during the year and announcements will be made in due time.

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