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The Norman Houston Award

Girl with a backpack looks at Queen's

This award has been created in memory of the late Norman Houston, friend of Queen’s and former Director of the Northern Ireland Bureau in the USA.

During his tenure leading the diplomatic mission to North America, Mr Houston was a universally respected and admired diplomat. He was also a strong supporter and advocate of Queen’s, supporting a wide range of youth development and leadership programmes. It is a great honour for the University to remember Norman Houston through the establishment of ‘The Norman Houston- Study Northern Ireland Award’.

1 award will be provided each academic year to provide a full tuition-fee and accommodation waiver for an exceptional visiting (study abroad) student from the USA.

Meet the 2023 Norman Houston Award winner Mary Novak

Imposing Lanyon

At Queen’s we offer a world-class education that prepares our students for leadership and citizenship in a global society.

As an institution, we are committed to widening participation in international education opportunities. This award has been created in partnership with the Northern Ireland Bureau for students from the USA with the greatest financial need. 

The award package includes:

  • Semester tuition fee-waiver
  • University accommodation
  • Return flight from USA to Belfast
  • A return airport transfer to/from the University halls of residence

    This award is designed to support students with the greatest financial need who might not otherwise have the opportunity to study abroad. To be considered for the award, students must meet the following criteria:

    • Student must be a USA national, enrolled in a full-time bachelors programme at a USA University or College
    • Student must be in receipt of federal aid. Priority will be given to those in receipt of the Pell Grant.
    • Student must meet QUB’s normal study abroad academic eligibility requirements- minimum GPA of 3.0 or above
    • Student must not have undertaken study abroad previously – this award is designed to facilitate a study abroad experience for a student who has not yet had this opportunity

    To be considered for this award, you must first complete the University’s online study abroad application form and submit the supporting documents indicated on the form. . Guidance on how to apply can be found here.

    When you have submitted your study abroad application and supporting documents, please send the following to and please ensure that the subject line of your email is ‘Norman Houston Award’

    • A short essay detailing what this award would mean to you and why you wish to study abroad at Queen’s (no more than 400 words)
    • A short video introducing yourself to the panel – tell us about your interests, hopes and aspirations for the future (1 minute maximum)
    • A letter from your home institution (study abroad or financial aid office) confirming that you meet the financial need basis for this award – Pell Grant or other relevant financial aid

    Applications for this award open on 17 February 2024.

    Deadline 21 April 2024.

    Decisions will be communicated to applicants by Monday 19 May 2024.


    If you have any questions on this award, please contact

    1. This award is exclusively for new International students who have not studied at Queen’s University before.
    2. Students must have applied to Queen’s University through the normal Study Abroad application process and have demonstrated the required academic standards to receive an offer.
    3. Students must be domiciled in the USA to be considered for this scholarship.
    4. Students must be enrolled in a full-time bachelors programme at a USA University or College.
    5. Deadline to apply for the Norman Houston Study Northern Ireland Award is 23:59 UK time 21 April 2024.
    6. No cash alternative is available in lieu of the scholarship.
    7. Candidates must avail of their award in the academic year which they have applied for. The Scholarship cannot be deferred without the express consent of Queen’s University Belfast.
    8. The recipient will agree to supporting some publicity of the award upon their enrolment at Queen’s University Belfast – participating in a photo-call and producing 2 blogs/testimonials about their experience.
    9. The University is unable to consider requests for increased and/or further funding. The amount of scholarship offered is non-negotiable.
    10. The University reserves the right to vary all or any scholarship awards, discounts and regulations at its sole discretion.
    11. This award is only for students who would normally be classified as ‘fee paying’ Study Abroad students. This award is not open to students who can participate in an exchange programme through which tuition fees are waived.