Funding for Graduate Students

A variety of financial assistance is available for graduate students pursuing Japanese studies at UHM. What we have listed may not be comprehensive and students should also inquire at their respective departments. We also share information on award and scholarships opportunities to our listserv/mailing list. If you could like to subscribe to our list, please e-mail and indicate that you are a UHM graduate student.

CJS Graduate Student Travel Awards

For UHM graduate students who focus on Japan to present papers at conferences or attend advanced training workshop on the U.S. mainland and abroad. The award is up to $1,000 for airfare, per diem, and other conference-related expenses such as registration.

To apply, students should complete and submit the summary sheet linked below, and submit the six numbered items listed below, organized in that order. As a checklist, please write the corresponding number of each item below (#1 – #6) at the top right corner page of the item. An incomplete application may result in non-funding.

Summary Sheet

  1. Letter of acceptance or invitation (If student has not yet received official notice of acceptance, he/she should still submit the other application materials in anticipation of their paper being accepted.)
  2. CV
  3. Budget
  4. Paper abstract (written for the non-specialist)
  5. A conference flier, brochure, or schedule
  6. Recommendation letter from lead faculty advisor.

Please submit applications by email to CJS Office Manager, Ms. Sachiko Roos [] or by dropping them off
in person at our office in Moore Hall, Room 216.

Students who have received a CJS Travel Award within the past two years will be
given lower priority. Travel must begin on or after the application deadline (up to
one year in advance).

Deadlines: November 1, February 1, May 1, and August 1.

CJS Fellowships and Scholarships

Funds administered by the Center for Japanese Studies (CJS) are applied through UH Mānoa Student Scholarships (STAR) system, one application submission allows the student to apply for all CJS fellowships.

Center for Japanese Studies Graduate Fellowship (approximately $20,000)The purpose of this fund is to assist full-time graduate students who are enrolled in any department or program at UHM that has a focus or specialization in Japanese Studies. Scholarship is open to international students.

Hanayo Sasaki Graduate Merit Scholarship (approximately $2,000) – For full-time graduate students.  The prospective recipient should have a focus on Japanese studies. This scholarship is endowed by Mrs. Hanayo Sasaki of Honolulu. Scholarship is open to international students.

John Fee Embree Scholarship Fund at UHM (average awarded $1,500) – For full-time graduate students in anthropology or sociology who focus on Japan or Southeast Asia. The scholarship commemorates Anthropologist John Fee Embree (1908-1950) who studied Japanese culture and Japanese immigrants in Hawaii as well as South East Asia. He earned a B.A. from UHM and a PhD from the University of Chicago and taught at UHM before moving to Yale University. Scholarship is open to international students.

Minae and Miki Kajiyama Graduate Scholarship Fund in Japanese Studies (approximately $3,000) – Preference given to students concentrating in one or more of the following areas: relations between Korea and Japan; Hiroshima and the atomic bomb; and Japanese emigration. This scholarship is based on the donation from Minae and Miki, the widow and daughter of Toshiyuki Kajiyama (1930-1975), a popular novelist and freelance journalist in Japan. Having numerous entertainment novels published, Mr. Kajiyama, born in Seoul, Korea, explored Korea, the atomic bomb, and Japanese immigrant related-issues for his lifetime work. The Hamilton Library has a special collection of books that he wrote and gathered for his works. Scholarship is open to international students.

Takie Sugiyama Lebra Fund Scholarship (approximately $15,000) – For full-time graduate students enrolled in Japanese Studies at UHM. The prospective student must be pursuing a degree in socio-cultural anthropology of Japan. This fellowship is endowed by Dr. Takie Sugiyama Lebra, Professor Emerita of Anthropology, who taught at UHM from 1970 until her retirement in 1996.

Tasuku Harada Graduate Scholarship (approximately $4,500) – For full-time graduate students in the field of Japanese Studies. This scholarship commemorates the first professor of Japanese studies at UHM, Dr. Tasuku Harada (during the academic year 1920-21).

Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships

Federally funded academic scholarships designed to provide support and funding to  students studying the languages and cultures of a specific East Asian country/region. Current FLAS East Asia languages at UHM are Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. Apply through the UH Mānoa Student Scholarships (STAR) system.

Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) East Asia – Summer fellowships ($2,500 stipend plus tuition cost no more than $5,000)

Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) East Asia – Academic Year fellowships (two semesters) ($20,000 stipend plus tuition support of no more than $18,000 for graduate students)

Other UHM administered scholarships

Please contact the appropriate funding agency in advance for exact deadlines and amounts.

Crown Prince Akihito Scholarships are for one or two years (renewable after
first year) of study in Japan and provide $30,000 (+ $15,000 COLA and tuition
supplement) annually. Two scholarships are usually awarded each year to graduate
students (US citizenship required) enrolled at UHM who are studying in a subject area
leading to better understanding and relations between Japan and the United States.
Familiarity with and knowledge of Japanese culture and language are helpful.
Applications are usually available at the beginning of September from CJS. Information can also be found at

East-West Center Graduate Degree Fellowships are available to individuals interested in participating in the educational and research programs of the East-West Center while pursuing graduate degree study at the University of Hawai’i. Citizens and permanent residents of the United States and citizens of countries in the Pacific and Asia are eligible. Provisions may include dormitory housing, monthly stipend, tuition and fees, allowance for books, and health insurance. Fellowships are granted on an annual basis but may be renewed to the allowed maximum grant time. Contact: East-West Center Award Services Office; 1601 East-West Rd.; Honolulu, HI 96848-1601; tel: (808) 944-7735; fax: (808) 944-7730. Information can also be found at

Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad are primarily for academic research in Japan, but may be partly used for supplementary Japanese language study, or for an internship to supplement research. Applicants must be US citizens and PhD dissertation research candidates or graduate students enrolled in professional schools. Grants provide round trip international transportation, health and accident insurance, tuition and maintenance for one academic year. UH students must apply through UH Graduate Division. For more information and applications, visit the Graduate Division’s webpage on this:

Japan-America Student Conference (JASC) Scholarship. The Center for Japanese Studies offers a scholarship in the amount of the JASC participation fee to the Japan-America Student Conference for a UHM full-time undergraduate or graduate student.

Elijah Collier in Japan

The Japan-America Student Conference (JASC) is a student-led exchange program, initiated in 1934 by university students concerned by the breakdown of bilateral relations prior to the Second World War. Today, an equal number of students from the U.S. and Japan are competitively selected each year to spend one summer month together, studying and analyzing Japan-U.S. relations while visiting four diverse regions in the host country. JASC alternates its host country every year, emphasizing the personal connections between two distinct cultures gathered together in one place.

2023 Award Recipient: Mr. Elijah Collier:
Read Elijah Collier’s report

Learn more about JASC:
Informational Flyer: JASC 2024 scholarship flyer

The application period typically opens in early fall and is due in late December.

For questions and information on how to apply for this CJS scholarship, please contact:
Dr. Gay Satsuma, Associate Director, Center for Japanese Studies, UHM

Monbukagakusho Research Scholarships – The Japanese Ministry of Education
offers scholarships for graduate students to conduct research at Japanese universities
for terms of one and a half or two years. Applicants must be US citizens, under thirty-five years of age, in sound health, and either have sufficient Japanese-language ability
to enable them to carry out their research projects or be willing to be trained in
Japanese upon arrival. The scholarships provide a monthly allowance of approximately
180,000 yen (subject to change depending on budget), transportation to and from
Japan, an arrival allowance and a field of study allowance, university fees and tuition,
and assistance with accommodations. An orientation session is held around April for
interested students. For more information, please contact Ms. Lisa Sakamoto,
Consulate General of Japan in Honolulu, at 543-3111 or Dr. Gay Satsuma, Center for
Japanese Studies, UHM, at 956-2664.

Matsuro and Tsuruko Nakasone Endowment Fund – The purpose of the Fund is to provide students, preferably graduate students, with the opportunity to travel outside of Hawai’i to engage in study or research in Okinawa-related subjects. These students should have an academic focus or interest in Okinawan studies and have demonstrated a commitment to learning about or acquiring a deeper understanding of Okinawa, its people, culture and history. First priority use of the Fund shall be for travel with educational purposes that are directly related to Okinawan studies, and may be used for, but not limited to: attending conferences, presenting papers, conducting research, and participating in educational activities such as student competitions, training or special or joint projects. Second priority use of the Fund shall provide general support and aid to students, which include, but are not limited to: scholarships (tuition, books and fees), awards, conference fees, project materials and supplies, or training directly related to Okinawan studies. Web:


(1) Recipients must be full-time or part-time, undergraduate or graduate students enrolled in any area of study at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, who have an academic focus or interest in Okinawan studies and have demonstrated a commitment to learning about or acquiring a deeper understanding of Okinawa, its people, culture and history. Preference shall be given to graduate students.

(2) Financial need shall be a criterion in making this award, although not necessarily as defined by federal guidelines.

Awards not administered by UHM

Please contact the appropriate funding agency in advance for exact deadlines and amounts.

Founder Region Fellowship (a foundation within Founder Region, Soroptimist International) offers financial grants totaling up to $20,000 to women in the last year of their doctoral degree. Applicants must be citizens of a country in which there are Soroptimist Clubs and must be attending a university within the boundary of Founder Region which includes the state of Hawai’i. For information and applications visit

Japan Foundation Japanese Studies Fellowship Program is intended to provide doctoral candidates in social sciences and humanities with an opportunity to conduct dissertation research in Japan ranging from four to twelve months. Candidates should be US citizens or permanent residents. Applicants must be at the ABD (all-but dissertation) level and have sufficient proficiency in Japanese to pursue their research in Japan. Doctoral fellows receive 310,000 yen per month in addition to other allowances. For information and applications, contact The Japan Foundation Los Angeles Office at; tel: (213) 621-2267; fax: (213) 621-2590. To download the application materials, visit the website at

Luce Scholars Program – Those who already have significant experience in Asia or Asian studies are not eligible. Candidates must be U.S. citizens who, by July 1 of the year they enter the program, will have received at least a bachelor’s degree and will not have reached their 30th birthday. The “Luce year” begins in late June with orientation in New York and San Francisco. Luce Scholars engage in intensive language study in Asia in July and August. Placements begin in September, and conclude with a wrap-up meeting in July of the following year. More details:

National Security Education Program (NSEP) David L. Boren Scholarships and Fellowships encourage US undergraduate and graduate students to add an international dimension to their curricula. Students already enrolled in internationally oriented programs are encouraged to intensify their study of areas, languages, and cultures. An award recipient is expected to work in the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, State, or the Intelligence Community. Applications are available on the NSEP website at