Swiss Excellence Scholarship: How to Apply?

Swiss Excellence Scholarship: How to Apply?

The Swiss Excellence Scholarship is awarded by the Swiss Confederation each year to promote international research cooperation and exchange between 180+ countries and Switzerland. The Swiss Government Excellence scholarships are granted by the FCS (Federal Commission for Scholarships), helping young researchers and learners who have finished their master’s and PhD courses and foreign artists who have bachelor’s degrees. 

As part of the Swiss Government Excellence scholarships 2022-2023, the research scholarships are offered to postgraduate scholars in any field holding masters’ degrees and planning to come to Switzerland for academics or research at the postdoctoral or doctoral levels. These scholarships are given for studying at Swiss universities for applied sciences, cantonal universities, federal institutes of technology, and research institutions. The art scholarships are open for all students from arts backgrounds who wish to pursue their master’s in the country. 

Eligibility and Benefits 

With regard to the Swiss Government Excellence scholarships for Indian nationals, there are specific criteria to be met. 

Postdoctoral Scholarship for Foreign Researchers

1. The scholarship amount is CHF 3,500 every month. Swiss health insurance is also paid to non-EFTA/EU applicants while flight allowance and a CHF 300 housing allowance are also provided.

2. PhDs achieved post 31st December 2018, and before 31st July 2022 will be eligible with submission of degree proof to the FCS.

3. Letter from an academic host or professor, including their CV at the selected university.

4. They should submit research proposals and their timelines.  

Research Fellowship

1. The monthly scholarship payment is CHF 1,920 with CHF 300 as the housing allowance, flight allowance and health insurance for non-EFTA/EU applicants.

2. Those holding master’s degrees or equivalent degrees before 31st July 2022 will be eligible to apply with submission of proof to the FCS.

3. Applicants should have been born after 31st December 1986.

4. Those in Switzerland for more than a year at the commencement of the scholarship will not be eligible.

5. A letter from the academic professor/host is required (including their CV).

6. The research proposal with timelines should also be submitted.

7. Applicants should have relevant language skills.  

PhD

1. The financial benefits are the same as under research fellowship.

2. The master’s degree should have been obtained before 31st July, 2022.

3. Applicants should have been born after 31st December 1986.

4. Those in Switzerland for more than a year at the commencement of the scholarship will not be eligible.

5. A letter from the academic professor/host is required (including their CV).

6. The research proposal with timelines should also be submitted.

7. Applicants should have relevant language skills.  

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Documents Required

1. Two sets (original and copy) of application documents.

2. First set should have original signed documents and letters of recommendation and attested English translations if applicable.

3. The copy will have everything except for the confidential LORs.

4. Signed FCS application form with photograph.

5. Full resume with a list of awards and publications.

6. Motivation Letter (two pages).

7. Research proposal (five pages and signed) with the FCS form.

8. Copy of letter from academic professor/host at chosen university including their CV.

9. Two confidential LORs from different professors in the field.

10. Photocopies of grade and mark sheets and certificates from earlier colleges/universities with the grades.

11. Attested translations in English are required if they are in any other language.

12. Signed medical certificate using the FCS form.

13. Two passport copies (the main page which has the personal information). 

How Can You Apply?

1. The first stage is early in August, when the program is released for 180+ countries at the official website of Swiss Excellence Scholarships.  

2. You can then receive the application package via the Swiss representation roughly around September. 

3. The submission deadline varies and is usually between September and December. 

4. The FCS selects candidates by end-May. 

5. The scholarship begins next September at the academic institution in Switzerland. 

Important Dates

The FCS chooses scholarships for 2022-23 by the end-May, of 2022. For 2023-24, they are advertised from August 2022. For 2022-23 scholarships, Indian nationals should have applied by 12th November 2021, while the application call was given on 1st August 2021. 

Selection Criteria

Applicants will have to undergo preliminary evaluation by the authorities and the Swiss representation. The FCS then evaluates shortlisted applications, which takes the binding decision. The applications are assessed on the basis of the candidate’s profile, any future research potential and the quality of the candidate’s artistic or research project. The FCS includes professors from all the public universities in Switzerland. In a nutshell, these are the criteria: 

1. The academic profile of the candidate, research capacity, and motivation. 

2. The originality of the research project and methodological framework. 

3. Academic quality, context, and overall potential for future academic cooperation and supervision context.

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