Thomas J. Watson Fellowships

For more information about this fellowship, contact the chair of the Bates Watson Committee, Professor Andrew Mountcastle (


The Thomas J. Watson Fellowships support graduating seniors nominated by their college or university for independent study abroad on a topic of special interest to the individual. The travel experience is envisioned as an opportunity for fellows to explore a particular interest, view their lives and American society in greater perspective, and develop a more enlightened sense of international concern. It is not intended for fellows to engage in extended formal study at a foreign university.

The Watson Fellowships seek to encourage individuals who demonstrate integrity, strong ethical character, intelligence, the capacity for vision and leadership, and potential for humane and effective participation in the world community. The candidate’s proposed project is especially important and should involve investigation into an area of demonstrated concern and personal commitment.


Each Watson Fellow receives $36,000 to support a year of purposeful postgraduate study and travel abroad, in pursuit of a plan of the fellow’s own design.

For more information on the fellowships, visit the Thomas J. Watson Foundation website.


2020-2021 Watson Fellowship Instructions