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    Want to go on a study trip to the Global South?

    Get a REI Scholarship!


    REI is a travel grant for students at a Flemish university or graduate school, for an individual study trip to a country in the Global South. The exchange is part of an approved course, such as an internship or a thesis.

    Where and when?

    The full list of partner countries in the Global South can be found in the criteria, but just to name a few:

    • Africa: Cameroon, Congo, Tanzania, Uganda …
    • America: Bolivia, Cuba, Ecuador, Suriname, …
    • Asia: Cambodia, India, Thailand, Vietnam…

    Your stay lasts at least a month.

    If you're curious, click the map below, and read about other students' experiences in the countries that interest you!

    What other students had to say...

    REI: narrative reports

    Why go?

    This is a chance for you to contribute to sustainable development, but also to:

    • Gain practical experience in a unique setting
      Match your theoretical knowledge with practice, and get to know local habits and creativity.
    • Live in and experience different cultures
      And gain a better understanding of your own, through them.
    • Expand your job opportunities
      Employers are always looking for people an entrepreneurial spirit, international experience, intercultural skills and an open mind.


    In the South, you will be working in or with a local organisation, like a university, a hospital, an NGO, etc. The promotor at your university will help you with the content of and preparations for your stay. You will also need to find a promotor in the South, because they will provide local support. You will be living, studying and/or working in an unfamiliar environment, with a different language and customs. Strong support ensures a positive experience.

    Want to know more?

    Find the full criteria and the application procedure on the next tab, or contact us if you have any questions!


    To get a REI scholarship, you have to meet a number of criteria. If you have any questions about the listed requirements, do not hesitate to contact us.

    Eligibility criteria

    • You are registered with a diploma contract at a Flemish university or college of higher education.
    • You have the Belgian nationality or you are a citizen of a member country of the European Union or a member country of the European Free Trade Association (Liechtenstein, Norway, Iceland and Switzerland).
    • You are enrolled in one of the following courses: bachelor (requests are accepted in the 2nd year in order to leave during the 3rd year), master, advanced master, bachelor after bachelor, specific teacher education, transitioning programme, HBO5 study.
    • The destination is a country listed on the VLIR-UOS list.
    • You have never received a VLIR-UOS scholarship before.
    • During your current study you are not receiving any other funding from the budget of development cooperation, or another scholarship for a study exchange to the Global South. You are not an Erasmus student.
    • You must be able to rely on the guidance of a Flemish promoter, and a promotor in the designated country, both with relevant experience and knowledge in your field of study.
    • The stay lasts at least four full weeks (one full month, not working weeks)


    You must attend the preparation day organized by UCOS before departure.


    For the call that launches in October 2020, the study trips must start in 2021. At least four weeks (on full month, not working weeks) of your stay must take place in the year 2021


    The stay lasts at least four full weeks (one full month, not working weeks). There is no maximum timeframe to your stay.

    Extra information


    Submit your application following this procedure.


    There are two submission rounds: the first in December, the second in May. You can submit your candidacy only once a year. This application has to be made prior to your departure. As the International Office checks the applications for completeness and brings together all requests in order to forward them to VLIR, we work with an internal VUB deadline.

    The next deadline is 31 July 2021.


    The entire application process is described in the VLIR call along with the VUB regulations.

    The application must be submitted via the VLIR database.

    During your online application, you will need to add five documents in PDF format.

    • A personal motivational letter of maximum two pages.
    • A letter of recommendation drawn up and signed by the Flemish promotor who is connected to the VUB. In this letter the promotor needs to state clearly that s/he thoroughly checked the contents of the application and supports it. 
    • An invitation letter from the promotor in the country of destination (if necessary, a translation into Dutch, English or French by the student)
    • A copy of your VUB student ID or your registration certificate.
    • The certificate of the preparation day organized by UCOS.

    Tip: check out the manual for further information.

    If you are having trouble with your application, head on over to the contact tab.


    The selection procedure is conducted in accordance with the VLIR selection procedures and the VUB regulations. Once VLIR has approved the selection, students are informed. If the student is not admitted they will receive feedback.

    Scholarship payment

    The first payment will be done before departure.

    The final payment will only be made if the student submits the final report correctly and when they have completed the full training cycle. The final report should be completed within one month after return. You should add this report in your online file, under the tab Report.


    Should you have any other questions, don't hesitate to contact us!

    International Relations Office

    The International Relations Office (IRMO) provides information, compiles the student applications, sends them to VLIR, and makes the scholarship payments.


    Contact at VUB

    Vincent Spiessens is the VUB contact for REI / Institutional Coordinator for Development Cooperation (ICOS) at the International Relations Office



    The Flemish Interuniversity Council - University Development Cooperation (VLIR-UOS) is the coordinating organisation. Check out the VLIR-UOS website for more information.