Harvard South Africa Fellowship Programme 2020 – 2021

The Harvard South Africa Fellowship Programme, or HSAFP, is an educational programme that aims to provide better opportunities to mid-career professionals who are educationally disadvantaged as a result of resource allocation and past laws in South Africa. The programme continues to expand, and under the Drew Gilpin Faust administration, it has doubled its efforts to reach out to the broadest range of potential candidates who are qualified to join the programme.

The Harvard South Africa Fellowship Programme

Founded in 1979 by then Harvard University President Derek Curtis Bok, the HSAFP’s mission was to provide critical aid to young South African students who were unable to receive advanced education as a result of the apartheid system. Moreover, HSAFP has broadened its applicant pool by inviting all qualified South Africans regardless of race or ethnicity to send in their application.

The beneficiaries are chosen based on their demonstrable skills in their chosen expertise and are expected to acquire a great deal of knowledge from advanced training.  The fellowship offer covers a year of studies in any one of Harvard’s Graduate School of Arts or Professional Schools. The School will provide the tuition waiver while the Office of the President provides the monthly stipends, program management funds and airfare. The HSAFP has awarded more than 200 fellowships since it started in 1979.

Requirements or Eligibility

Interested individuals must review the following minimum qualifications before sending their applications:

  • Mid-career professionals or those who have working experience and possess considerable skill in their area of specialization
  • Candidates who have recently completed  or have yet to complete their course of study to further their chosen field of specialization
  • Must be South citizens 30 to 45 years of age
  • Permanent residents with South Africa ID card are welcome to apply
  • Must be able to secure a leave of absence from an employer
  • Must be able to pass admission at Harvard
  • Must be available for Harvard residency by September to June. Note that some courses start on July 1st

How to Apply

Qualified individuals who are interested in applying for a fellowship are required to submit the following documents:

  • Access CARAT and register an XID account where the required documents will be submitted. Click here to get started
  • Full transcripts from secondary learning institutions attended
  • Transcripts must contain course titles and grades obtained from secondary learning institutions 
  • Two (2) letters of recommendation. Must be submitted via the “References” tab on CARAT
  • Writing samples in the form of a personal and an academic essay typed in a standard font and 10 to 12 pt font and double spaced.
  • A personal statement must have at least 250 words and a maximum of 750 words. An essay must contain at least 500 to 1000 words
  • Essay, personal statement, transcripts and CV must be submitted via the “Uploads” button on the “Browse Opportunities” page.
  • Applicant’s full name must be indicated at the top of each page

The HSAFP Application Process:

Complete the application on CARAT and upload the necessary documents through the “Uploads” tab.

Note: The HSAFP application is hosted on CARAT (Centralized Application for Research and Travel) and search “HSAFP” for the application. Unless you are a Harvard affiliate, you must register for an XID before applying through CARAT. You will create an XID LogidID and password to use when accessing CARAT. If you are a Harvard student or alumnus, you can access CARAT with your HarvardKey user credentials. Please note that upload sizes on CARAT are limited to 2MB.

Important Notes

  • An academic essay must describe all critical issue related to the applicant’s field of study
  • A personal statement must talk about reasons for studying at Harvard and how studying there is connected to the applicant’s past actions and decisions

Opening and Closing Dates

The submission of applications starts on 2 December 2019 and ends on 15 April 2020.

Contact Information

If you have questions about the fellowship, get in touch with Lerato Motaungo, Programme Officer at africaoffice@harvard.edu

Click here to learn more about the HSAPF application process by clicking below:


We are here to provide you an overview of all the latest internships, bursaries, apprenticeships, graduate programmes, learnerships and jobs opportunities that are available for application in South Africa.

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