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Yenching Academy Scholarships

November 6, 2017 (internal deadline)
Arts and Humanities
Social Science
Full Year


The Yenching Academy seeks top students from the world’s best universities to pursue a one-year, interdisciplinary MA degree in China Studies on full scholarship. The Yenching Academy aims for a student body with broad geographic and academic representation within this cohort. Academy courses are available in both English and Chinese and it is possible for students to complete their degrees with courses taught in English (although Chinese language courses are required for all international students, and those with an advanced level of Chinese are encouraged to take courses taught in Chinese). Fellowships for international Yenching Scholars are for twelve months, during which they complete their coursework and may complete a thesis.  A limited number of financial aid packages are available for those who wish to remain on campus for a second year.  Degrees are granted upon the completion of all coursework and satisfactory defense of the thesis, and are awarded in January and July of each year.

Yenching Scholars take courses in the following six broad categories: Literature and Culture; History and Archaeology; Philosophy and Religion; Public Policy and International Relations; Economics and Management; and Law and Society. Scholars are further immersed in Chinese culture through field excursions around China and an intensive Chinese language program taken along with their degree studies. Moreover, Yenching Scholars have access to prominent guest lectures, world-renowned visiting faculty, visits to leading domestic and international companies, organizations, and government institutions, and special seminars. Scholars are also required to enrich their academic knowledge outside the classroom by completing an internship or conducting a Field Study guided by a faculty mentor.

University endorsement: Currently enrolled seniors of Columbia College, the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and the School of General Studies must apply through Columbia University by the internal deadline in order to be considered for the national competition. Currently enrolled CC, GS, SEAS students may not apply independently for this fellowship. Alumni apply directly to the program by the deadline stated on the Yenching website.

To apply (currently enrolled CU undergraduates only): Open an application online here (by clicking 'Start an Application') and submit all application materials to OGP no later than 11:59pm EST on the deadline stated above. Your letters of recommendation should also be submitted to no later than this deadline as well. All applicants must hold a bachelor's degree by August in order to accept the scholarship. Preference is given to those 25 years old or younger by August 31; or 27 years old or younger for students from countries with mandatory military service.

Meet Columbia's most recent Yenching Scholars: Gabrielle De Haan '16CC (East Asian Studies); Jing Hao Liong '16CC (Economics, Political Science); Sasha Benincasa '16CC (East Asian Studies); Jeff Niu '16GS (East Asian Studies); Jackson Tse '15CC (Political Science).