Frequently Asked Questions

Application Information

When is the application deadline?
November 1, 11:59pm EDT

What are your citizenship requirements?
Only U.S. citizens are eligible. Permanent residents or citizens of other nations may not apply.

What are the age requirements for the program?
Applicants must be 40 years of age or younger at the application deadline.

What kind of candidates are you looking for?
Ideal candidates have a minimum of five years of relevant, full-time professional experience in one of the application fields listed below (excluding internships), a graduate degree, outstanding academic records, a genuine commitment to transatlantic relations, and active involvement in community affairs and/or public affairs.

What fields are candidates chosen from?
Candidates are chosen from the fields of business administration, cultural management, journalism, law, non-profit management, public policy, and urban planning.

How competitive is the program?
In the past, we have received up to 600 applications for one program year.

What do I need to send to Cultural Vistas to apply?
A complete application includes the online application form, short essay questions, a resume, university transcripts, and two letters of recommendation. All documents can be uploaded online. If necessary, transcripts and recommendation letters can be mailed to the following address:

Robert Bosch Foundation Fellowship Program
Cultural Vistas
440 Park Avenue South, 2nd Fl
New York, NY 10016

All materials must arrive in the New York office by November 1.

What are the short essay questions?
1) In one sentence, why are you applying for the Robert Bosch Foundation Fellowship Program?

2) Describe your short and long-term career plans. How does the Robert Bosch Foundation Fellowship fit into your career trajectory? (max. 200 words)

3) Describe your experience and interest in Germany and transatlantic relations. In your opinion, what is currently the most important transatlantic issue? (max. 200 words)

4) As a guideline for the work placements and seminar presentations, Fellows are required to identify a transatlantic topic related to their field and expertise. Please describe the topic you would like to explore while you are in Germany.  (max. 200 words)

5) Name a specific institution (up to two), including department, where you would like to undertake a work placement in line with your transatlantic topic interests. How would this work placement contribute to your professional development? (max. 300 words)

6) Imagine you were awarded 10,000 USD from the Robert Bosch Stiftung to complete a project to further transatlantic relations after the conclusion of the program. Please describe how you would utilize the funds. (max. 100 words)

Who should write the letters of recommendation?
Recommenders can be recent supervisors, professional mentors, or professors. Recommenders should know the applicant well and have a strong professional relationship with them. The Selection Committee would prefer to have a letter of recommendation from the applicant’s current supervisor, if possible. If the applicant has been nominated for the program, he/she is strongly encouraged to request a letter of recommendation from the nominator.

To whom should the letters of recommendation be addressed?
Letters of recommendation should be addressed to the "Members of the Selection Committee".

May I request that more than two letters of recommendation be sent?
Please only request two letters of recommendation. Additional letters of recommendation will not be read.

What is the timeline for the application process?

November 1: Application deadline. Online applications must be submitted and original documents must be received by Cultural Vistas by November 1 at 11.59pm EDT. Please do not contact Cultural Vistas regarding the status of your application.

By November 30:
 Application status (complete/incomplete) will be sent via email.

By February 1:
 Reviewed application status/invitation to interview will be sent via email.

Late February:
 Interviews take place. Location TBD.

Who is involved in the review of applications and determination of interview status?
The pre-selection committee is composed of a confidential committee of experts.

When are interviews held?
Interviews are expected to take place in late February.

How many candidates are invited to interview?
Thirty candidates will be invited.

Must the interview be attended in-person?
Yes.  Virtual (ex. Skype) or telephone interviews are not possible.

Who are the Selection Committee members?
The Selection Committee is composed of American and German leaders in the fields covered by the Bosch Fellowship.  Please note that the decision of whom to grant the fellowship is made solely at the discretion of the Selection Committee members.

Can the program be deferred to a later year?

Program Information

What is the duration of the program?

The seminar series and work placements begin in September.  Fellows may choose from two options: 6 months (September – February) or 9 months (September – May).  Prior to the seminar series and work placements, Fellows are required to participate in German language training, depending on their German language proficiency level.  Language training begins in the United States in March with private tutoring for up to 4 hours/week until departure for Germany.  Fellows will participate in full-time group language training in Germany starting in July or August, depending on how their German language proficiency has progressed.

What is the program timeline in Germany?
May – Orientation in DC
July or August – Fellows arrive in Germany; full-time language training
September (2 weeks) – Seminar I
October - First work phase begins
January/February – Seminar II; 6-month Fellows depart
February – Second work phase begins
End of May – Seminar III; 9-month Fellows depart

What are some examples of past host institutions for the work phases (stages)?
Below are examples of institutions that have hosted Bosch Fellows in the past. Fellows are not limited to this selection:

Sample Federal Ministries 

  • Auswärtiges Amt (Federal Foreign Office)
  • Deutscher Bundestag (German Parliament)
  • Bundesministerium der Verteidigung (Federal Ministry of Defense) Bundesministerium der Finanzen (Federal Ministry of Finance Bundesministerium der Justiz (Federal Ministry of Justice)
  • Bundesministerium für Umwelt, Naturschutz und Reaktorsicherheit (Federal Ministry of the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety)
  • Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Energie (Federal for Economic Affairs and Energy)
  • Presse- und Informationsamt der Bundesregierung (Federal Press and Information Office)
  • Berlin Senate Department for Urban Development
  • Supreme Court
  • German Institute for International and Security Affairs

Sample Private Firms / NGOs

  • Bertelsmann AG
  • BMW AG
  • Daimler-Chrysler
  • Deutsche Bank AG
  • Deutsche Telekom AG
  • Ecologic
  • Google
  • International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives
  • International Organization for Migration
  • KPMG Deutsche Treuhand-Gesellschaft
  • Porsche
  • Robert Bosch GmbH
  • Quadriga Capital Management GmbH
  • SAP Urban Matters
  • Schering AG
  • Siemens AG
  • Volkswagen AG

Sample Media Outlets

  • Agence France-Presse
  • Berlin Stories for NPR
  • Deutsche Welle
  • Deutschland Radio
  • Der Spiegel
  • Der Tagespiegel
  • Die Zeit
  • n-tv
  • Reuters
  • ZDF

Who arranges the placements (stages)?
In general, the Bosch Foundation arranges the stages in cooperation with the Fellows, who are responsible for identifying where they would like to work. If Fellows have close personal contacts at their desired institution, they can contact them directly after first consulting with the Bosch Foundation.  (Applicants should not contact potential host institutions to set up work phases during the application process.)

May I work a second job in Germany while on the fellowship?
A second occupation is generally not permitted. Any exceptions require the approval of the Robert Bosch Foundation.

What is the transatlantic topic?
Fellows are required to identify a specific transatlantic-themed project for the program year to the Stiftung. The Fellow should use this topic to frame his/her experience and pursue the project throughout his/her stages. Fellows are required to hold a presentation on this topic at the seminar sessions in February or May. Furthermore, the Fellow must submit a written report on this specific topic at the conclusion of the program.

May I bring my spouse? Can he or she work in Germany while I am there?
Yes, a spouse may accompany the Fellow and will be provided a residency permit (not a work visa) for the duration of the program.  Additional monthly funding is available for Bosch Fellows with an accompanying spouse who is not employed (EUR 400/month, starting in September). The spouse may accept an offer of employment in Germany, but the Fellow must notify the Foundation about such changes immediately.  The Bosch Foundation does not assist in obtaining work visas for accompanying family members.

May I bring my children?
Yes, children may accompany the Fellow. Additional monthly funding is available for Bosch Fellows with accompanying children (EUR 150/month for each child).

Does the program cover health insurance?
The Bosch Foundation provides the Fellow and his or her accompanying family members with health insurance.