China Scholarship Council-Yale World Scholars Program

Yale University has a longstanding relationship and deep history of collaboration with China. In 2006, Yale and the Chinese Ministry of Education forged their first major educational partnership in the biosciences, the China Scholarship Council (CSC) – Yale World Scholars Program in Biomedical Sciences. This program recruits top graduates from eight premiere institutions in China for enrollment in Yale’s Combined Program in Biological and Biomedical Sciences (BBS), with funding from both the CSC and Yale. The CSC-Yale World Scholars program offers students the same outstanding research training available to all BBS students, and also provides additional specialized professional development programs. The overall goal is to prepare the Scholars to become the next generation of scientific leaders in China, after completion of their graduate and postdoctoral training.

The eight partner institutions in China are Sun Yat-Sen University, Nanjing University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Fudan University, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Peking University, Tsinghua University, and Zhejiang University. These universities nominate four highly qualified graduating students for admission to BBS and the Yale Graduate School, and up to twenty will be admitted as CSC-Yale Scholars each year. Over fifty Scholars from these universities are currently enrolled in Yale.

Please note that applicants from these and other Chinese institutions may apply directly to the BBS Program. As stated elsewhere on this site, however, funding for international applicants is very limited, and only a very small percentage of international applicants receive offers of admission.

Specialized Training

Through meetings with successful Yale faculty and senior members of the Yale administration, CSC-Yale World Scholars will be introduced to the critical practices, strategies, and conventions necessary to become future leaders in biomedical research. For example, Scholars meet with faculty to gain insights on how to succeed in graduate school, run a successful research lab, start a biotech company, or translate basic science discoveries into clinical advancements.  Students also have the opportunity to meet with deans, vice presidents, or provosts, to learn about the operations of leading a research university.  Meetings are exclusively for CSC-Yale World Scholars and are not offered to other students.


Admissions Process

Each institution above will select and nominate four students for the CSC-Yale World Scholars Program. The CSC will then notify the BBS Program of the students’ nominations. The students apply to any Track of the BBS Program via the Yale Graduate School’s online application, and should mention in their personal statements that they have been nominated for consideration as a CSC-Yale World Scholar.

The BBS application deadline is December 1, 2016, however, nominees for the CSC-Yale World Scholars program will need to submit their application by November 1, 2016. Faculty from the BBS Program will travel to China in early December to interview applicants, and the November deadline will provide admissions committees with sufficient time to review application materials before the interviews.

Interviews will take place in China in December. Applicants will be contacted by email to schedule the interview times. After the interviews have been completed, the BBS admissions committees will select up to 20 nominees from the pool of 32 applicants and will recommend to the Graduate School that they be offered admission. These Scholars will be the best candidates in the judgment of the Yale admissions committees and will not necessarily be evenly distributed among the eight Chinese universities. The Dean of the Graduate School makes all final admissions decisions, which will be communicated to the students, the CSC and the Chinese universities in writing.

The students admitted to Yale will then proceed to apply for a two-year CSC fellowship via an online application, available at The CSC will officially announce the selection results to relevant Chinese universities and grantees in official documents. The terms of the CSC fellowship include an obligation to return to China for at least two years following the completion of Ph.D. and postdoctoral training.

Tony Koleske and Hongyu Zhao, co-Directors of the CSC-Yale World Scholars Program, meet with the students at the beginning of the semester.

Tony Koleske and Hongyu Zhao, co-Directors of the CSC-Yale World Scholars Program, meet with the students at the beginning of the semester.

“Joining the Yale family is by all means a brilliant touch to my life. Thanks to the CSC-Yale World Scholars Program, I get the chance to start my scientific career with lots of supportive and smart mentors as well as colleagues at Yale. CSC-Yale program also hosts various activities that either facilitate communication between CSC students and senior BBS faculty members, or help students deal with problems concerning both life and scientific career.

During my first year, I am most impressed by the diversity and unity of the Yale BBS program: seminar talks cover interdisciplinary fields and usually recruit a full room of listeners; scientists collaborate to pursue the truth with great passion; and labs of similar research orientation are more than willing to exchange their ideas etc.. Meanwhile, a friendly and creative network environment, which serves as the cradle of strong connections and intelligent ideas, is also inherited from generation to generation among young scientists.

In addition to research work, Yale is also world-renowned for its arts, music and historical architecture, which would definitely fascinate you now and then. I really enjoy the pleasant experience as an international student at Yale and I am sure that you would too!"

Lan Tang 
CSC-Yale World Scholars Program 
Neuroscience Track

Photo Courtesy of Hyungmee Lim

China Group 1

High level representatives from the 5 Chinese institutions visit the Yale School of Medicine. From left to right: Ling Sun, Professor and Deputy Director of the Fudan-Yale Center for Education Cooperation; Qiu-dan Sun, Professor and Director of International Cooperation at Peking University; Ding Yi, Professor of Biology at Tsinghua University; He Huang, Associate Dean of Medicine at Zhejiang University; Yi Rao, Dean of the School of Life Sciences at Peking University; Ken Wang, Dean of Huazhong University of Science and Technology; and Guangzhi Xia, Deputy Director of the Office for International Cooperation and Exchange at Tsinghua University.