SEARCA’s Graduate Study Program was initiated in School Year 1968/1969. Over four decades, the scope of the Graduate Study Program has expanded to include institutional development, networking, and services to enhance graduate education in the region. SEARCA has also been providing services for administration of scholarship funds under the sponsorship of institutions other than SEAMEO.
For more than four decades SEARCA has awarded more than 1,500 scholarships to nationals of SEAMEO regular member countries, namely: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Vietnam to pursue advanced studies leading to master’s and doctoral degrees in agriculture, forestry, and related sciences. (See Scholarship Statistics)
At the start of Academic Year 2017-2018 SEARCA has granted a total of 1,697 scholarships to Southeast Asian nationals.
- Open to nationals of SEAMEO member countries who are regular employees of academic or research institutions or government agencies.
- Must not be more than 35 (Master's Degree) or 40 (PhD) years of age at the time of application.
- Proposed thesis research should focus on SEARCA’s overarching theme of inclusive and sustainable agricultural and rural development (ISARD). Thus, areas of specialization of scholarship applicants must pursue should be agriculture or related sciences, which include but are not limited to those that fall under the following program clusters:
- Agricultural/Biological sciences
- Social Sciences
- Economics and Agribusiness
- Forestry and Fisheries
- Environmental Sciences
- Agro-industrial Technology and Engineering
Moreover, priority research topics must fall within the ISARD strategic thrusts on social inclusion, environmental sustainability, and cross-cutting concerns.
Covers tuition and other school fees; travel allowance (roundtrip air ticket from home country to study post and local transportation); thesis/dissertation support; book and supplies allowance; health insurance; and a stipend for food, lodging and incidental expenses.
Any one of the following universities under the University Consortium, may serve as study posts of SEARCA Master’s and PhD scholars:
- Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB)
- Kasetsart University (KU)
- Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM)
- Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM)
Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia
- University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB)
Los Baños, Laguna, Philippines
Nationals of SEAMEO member countries (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Vietnam) may apply for the scholarship. Applications may be submitted to any one of the following Ministries of the applicant’s own country (Click here to get the country-specific contact details/information):
- Ministry of Education
- Ministry of Agriculture
- Ministry of Forestry
- Ministry of Fisheries
- Ministry of Rural Development
The Ministry where the applicant is employed may conduct preliminary screening of applicants and submit their nominations and the application documents to the Ministry of Education/Higher Education, which will then include the nominees of other Ministries in the final list of candidates to be submitted to SEARCA. The other Ministries may opt to just receive applications and forward these, without preliminary screening, to the Ministry of Education/Higher Education. Alternatively, applications may be submitted directly to the Ministry of Education/Higher Education.
Application forms and information brochures on the universities that may serve as study posts of SEARCA scholars are available at these Ministries and may be downloaded from here.
Each applicant is required to submit the following documents:
- SEARCA Scholarship Application Form (2 copies);
- Application forms for admission to the Graduate School of the universities where the applicant may pursue graduate studies under SEARCA scholarship;
- Official transcript of academic records of each degree completed (BS transcript for MS applicants and BS and MS transcripts for PhD applicants);
- Certification of employment;
- Brief description of the research the applicant plans to conduct for thesis/dissertation. The research topic must be in line with the thrusts of SEARCA’s Tenth Five-Year Plan i.e., social equity, environmental integrity and regional economic integration by promoting food and nutrition security; value chains and agribusiness commodity systems; innovations and modern technologies; rural entrepreneurship; climate change adaptation and resiliency, natural resource management; sub-regional cooperation in trade and investments; and government policies/reforms that address rural poverty, inequitable growth, and environmental degradation. The Plan will be made available at http://www.searca.org.
- Two copies of passport-size pictures of the applicant;
- Curriculum vitae;
- Certification from a medical doctor that the applicant is in good physical and mental health condition and is fit to undertake graduate studies;
- Official endorsement from the employer; and
- Results of Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): score of 550 for paper-based and 213 for computer-based) or IELTS results (6.0). The TOEFL results must be issued by Princeton, New Jersey, USA. Check the schedule and venue of TOEFL tests in your country at http://www.ets.org/toefl/.
Deadline for the Ministries to send endorsements to SEARCA is 31 July of every year.
Applicants are thus requested to check from their respective Ministries of Education/Higher Education for their deadline of receiving applications.
Timeline for Scholarship Recruitment
Deadline for endorsement of complete application documents by the Ministries and other agencies to SEARCA for forthcoming school year
Screening and evaluation of application documents for interview of candidates for forthcoming school year
1 Sep – 15 Dec
of the following year
Recruitment and interview of official nominees for forthcoming school year
Final evaluation and awarding of scholarship grants
1 Feb – 30 Apr
SEARCA sends out official letters to Ministries of Education, Agriculture, and Rural Development; universities; and other relevant technical agencies and research institutions inviting nominations for SEARCA scholarship for forthcoming school year