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Good news! The applications for scholarships are open, from 8th February to 26th March 2024, through MENA Scholarship Programme (MSP). Funded by Nuffic, this initiative allows Dutch educational institutions to award scholarships to mid-career professionals from eligible countries.

To ensure a successful application, all candidates must be fluent in English and read the guidelines carefully, ensuring they meet all the criteria for the scholarships.

Employer Statement

A digitally signed employer statement will suffice for this round. A stamp is not required. Please, make sure that the employer statement format is used (see the model here). If applicants are unable to obtain an Employer Statement before the registration deadline, they may upload a temporary document which should be replaced with a signed employer statement before the nomination deadline. All nominated applications must include a (digitally) signed employer statement.  

Government Statement

If applicants are unable to obtain a Government Statement, they may upload a self-written statement declaring that they will provide the Government Statement after selection. We will inform the Embassies that applications without a Government Statement are eligible for this round.

Step 1: Check if you are eligible for MSP

To be eligible

  • You are a national of, and working and living in, one of these MSP countries
  • You are a mid-career professional and are nominated by your employer, who pledges to continue paying your salary and guarantees that you will be able to return to the same or an equivalent position at the end of your fellowship period. While scholarships are awarded to individuals, the need for training must be demonstrated in the context of the organisation for which the applicant works. The training must help the organisation develop its capacity. This means that you must have an employer’s statement that complies with the format Nuffic has provided. All information must be provided and all commitments that are included in the format must be endorsed in the statement;
  • You must not be employed by an organisation that has its own means of staff development. Organisations that are considered to have their own means for staff development are for example:
  1. multinational corporations (e.g. Shell, Unilever, Microsoft),
  2. large national and/or a large commercial organisation,
  3. bilateral donor organisations (e.g. USAID, DFID, Danida, Sida, Dutch Ministry of Foreign affairs, FinAid, AusAid, ADC, SwissAid),
  4. multilateral donor organisations, (e.g. a UN organization, the World Bank, the IMF, Asian Development Bank, African Development Bank, IADB),
  5. international NGO’s (e.g. Oxfam, Plan, Care);
  • You must have an official and valid passport;
  • You must not receive more than one fellowship for courses that take place at the same time;
  • You must have a government statement that meets the requirements of the country in which the employer is established (only if applicable, please check this overview);
  • Exception since February 2020: it is not necessary anymore for applicants from Iraq to download the government statement.
  • You must not be over 45 years of age at the time of the grant submission.
  • You have a good command of English to be able to participate fully in the training. MDF Training & Consultancy reserves the right to check this.

Priority areas for the MSP scholarships

  • The MENA Scholarship Programme (MSP) aims to build bridges through knowledge by offering opportunities for capacity building within organisations in the Middle East and North Africa. It enables young professional impact makers to take part in short courses in the Netherlands, and it facilitates tailor made training for organisations in the region.
  • The MSP focuses on building strong relations between the participating countries and the Netherlands by fostering strong alumni networks. It contributes to mutual understanding and knowledge sharing. The programme is funded by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs as part of the Shiraka programme and managed by Nuffic.
  • Each of the Dutch Embassies in the MSP countries works within the policy lines of the Dutch government. Within this framework, they have set priorities for their field of work. For detailed information, please visit the Embassy website to find out more. We would like to emphasize that applications that do not fit with the Country Focus have a small chance of being selected.
  • There is a further priority for people from Sub Saharan Africa and for women.

For further information about NUFFIC and the MSP sponsorship visit this page.

Step 2: Registration at Delta for MSP

You only need to apply in Delta.

Delta is an online registration system of Nuffic where you apply for a scholarship. You can register in Delta about two months before the respective application deadline.

Before applying for an MSP scholarship make sure you prepare the documents mentioned below. This is because your application has to be completed and submitted in one go. Please use the formats provided in Step 1.

How to apply?

  1. Look at the overview above for available MSP sponsored courses and read the course description.
  2. Before you start in Delta, you need to have all the required documents and information ready, as you will need to submit them online during one session. Learn more on how to apply in Delta (see guidelines).  Required documents are only accepted in pdf format (max 2 Mb).
  3. Your motivation in the registration form: Have this prepared so you can copy/paste it into the online application form. This motivation will weigh heavily in the selection procedure. Questions that are asked in your Nuffic application are:
    - What is the issue or problem you want to address in your country?
    - How will this course enable you to address this issue?
    - How will you address this issue with your position within your organisation?
  4. The required documents:
    - Copy of a valid passport
    - Employers letter, see step 1.
    - Government statement, see step 1.

For MSP: go to this DELTA website, include the required information, upload your documents and complete the registration.

NB: You cannot update or complete your information after you have submitted your application. If you want to update your information or documents, you have to register once more in Delta. You can leave the field 'reference number' empty.

Apply as early as possible

MDF will then start the assessment of your application. Only complete and correct applications will be considered.

Lots of success!

Step 3: Selection of candidates

The selection procedure at MDF, the Dutch Embassy and Nuffic continues as follows:

  1. MDF will nominate suitable candidates in Delta;
  2. Dutch Embassy in your country will indicate eligibility and suitability based on the Dutch ministries priorities and the Embassy priorities (check their priorities online);
  3. The Dutch Embassy will rank each of the eligible candidates;
  4. NUFFIC decides based on the available budget who of the candidates will be awarded a sponsorship;
  5. NUFFIC communicates the selected candidates to MDF;
  6. MDF will check with the candidates whether they can accept the sponsorship;
  7. MDF informs non-eligible candidates of the reason;
  8. The candidate needs to apply for a visa at the Embassy in her/his country with a supporting letter from MDF as soon as possible.

The application process until awarding takes about 10 weeks starting from the application deadline.

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