Yenching Academy

"The Yenching Academy introduces students to China’s rich history and culture, as well as its real-time development. As a prestigious college within Peking University, The Yenching Academy prepares a diverse group of international and Chinese students for tackling the most challenging issues facing the world." "Each class will consist of 120 to 150 outstanding young people from around the world, with approximately 80% from outside of China, and 20% from mainland China. Yenching Scholars will be a diverse group of talented young leaders who demonstrate academic excellence, leadership, innovative thought, and a commitment to the betterment of society." The University of Notre Dame is a Partner University of the Yenching Academy, meaning that Notre Dame applicants must receive one of a limited number of nominations from the University in order to move forward in the process. Eligibility includes international students and U.S. citizens.


  1. Has a bachelor’s degree in any field.
  2. Is under the age of 25 on August 31 of the year the Academy would begin.
  3. Has an outstanding academic record.
  4. Has demonstrated leadership skills.
  5. Is active in extracurricular activities.
  6. Is actively engaged with the community and has a strong sense of social responsibility.
  7. Has a strong moral character.
  8. Has demonstrated interest in exploring diverse cultures, in particular Chinese and Asian Pacific cultures.
  9. Has demonstrated English proficiency

Link to Official Website

When to Apply

Students should apply Spring-Summer junior year going into senior year, or the Spring-Summer prior to Fall they plan to submit application.

Next Steps

  1. Review the Yenching Academy Brochure for an overview of the program.
  2. If the brochure piques your interest, then visit the official website and review the information there for a more in-depth understanding of the program.
  3. Review the calendar below for information about deadlines. If you have missed the Campus Application Deadline, please contact us to see if we are still accepting applications.
  4. Complete the brief Declaration of Interest form and submit a resume to
  5. Please do the following by the Campus Application Deadline in order to apply for one of the limited number of nominations from the University:
    1. Update your curriculum vitae or resumé.
    2. Order a hard copy of your official transcript. Create a double-sided, color PDF scan. If you would like CUSE to produce the scan, please have the transcript delivered directly to CUSE (110 Brownson).
    3. Complete a 750-word personal statement in English, which should include a personal introduction and your reasons for wanting to be a Yenching Scholar.
    4. Complete the Yenching Academy Application Form
    5. Identify two recommenders and provide them with the Yenching Academy Recommender Form. You should select recommenders who can discuss "[your] strengths and ability to complete the Yenching Academy Master’s in China Studies program" and "[your] potential for becoming a responsible and successful leader." These will typically be professors who know you well, though one of the letters could come from someone outside of academia who has experience working with college students and can assess your leadership ability. Please inform your recommenders that they should submit their letters as PDF scans to by the Campus Application Deadline. They will receive further instructions from CUSE after the Deadline.
    6. Submit the items described in 1-4 to as PDFs or deliver hard copies to CUSE (110 Brownson).
  6. Soon after the Campus Application Deadline, CUSE will contact you with more information. If you are selected as a University nominee, you will have until the Final Deadline to revise your application material and complete the online application.
  7. If you hold a passport from Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, or Macao, you will also need to submit an application for admissions directly to Peking University by the Final Deadline if you wish to be considered. See the Yenching Academy Application page for more information.
  8. Direct any questions you have to

Calendar of Deadlines and Events

April 1-30, 2019 Schedule a meeting with Jenny Smith
July 15, 2019  Submit Draft 1 
August 26-30, 2019 Schedule a meeting with Jenny Smith
September 15, 2019 Submit Draft 2 
October 14-18, 2019 Schedule a meeting with Jenny Smith 
November 15, 2019 Nomination Deadline 
December 2019 Application Deadline