African Studies Center

University of Pennsylvania


The University of Pennsylvania and the US Department of Education

Fulbright–Hays Summer Group Project Abroad for Intensive Intermediate–Advanced Zulu
in Zululand, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

About the Fulbright-Hays Zulu GPA

The Fulbright-Hays Zulu Group Project Abroad (GPA) is a federally-funded project for students of Zulu across the nation to participate in an intensive, immersive intermediate-advanced program in Zululand, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. The project is funded by the U.S. Department of Education, with partial support from the University of Pennsylvania. Availability of awards is contingent upon federal funding.

The goals of the Fulbright-Hays Zulu GPA are:

  • To contribute to the development and improvement of the study of the Zulu language and culture by providing an opportunity to study the language in an immersive environment in Zululand, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
  • To assist in the development of knowledge, resources, and trained professionals in the Zulu language and African studies
  • To develop a pool of experts in Southern Africa to meet national demands

GPA Program Image

The Fulbright-Hays Zulu GPA offers students an opportunity to advance their language and cultural competency in the Zulu language through interaction with faculty, staff, students and families in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.The eight-week program combines intensive classroom instruction with home stays (urban and rural settings), lecture seminars, outreach cultural activities, and visits to historical and cultural sites. Students spend time in the city of Durban and in Zululand at eMpangeni and Richards Bay. They experience total immersion in the language and culture of amaZulu (Zulu people) by living with host families at eMpangeni and in a rural village at KwaDlangezwa for the entire duration of the program.

The Host Institution

The University of Zululand (also known as Ongoye), located in Zululand at KwaDlangezwa near eMpangeni (about 90 miles north of Durban), is the host institution for the Fulbright-Hays Zulu GPA. Situated in the home of amaZulu (Zulu people) right in the community of Zulu speakers, within proximity to major Zulu historical and cultural sites, the University of Zululand renders the opportunity for total immersion in the language and culture of amaZulu. On campus participants can interact with university staff, faculty, and students. They have access to amakhosi (chiefs) and izinduna (local community counselors) and other local community experts, some of whom work for the university and also serve as host families.

The University of Pennsylvania is the administrative institution for the program.

GPA Students at Mealtime


Please direct any questions about the Fulbright-Hays Zulu GPA to:

Audrey N Mbeje, Ph.D.
Director of the Fulbright-Hays Zulu GPA
University of Pennsylvania
African Studies Center
648 Williams Hall
Philadelphia, PA 19104
215.898.4299 (W)

For more information about African Languages at Penn please email the Director of African Language Program,
Dr. Audrey N Mbeje, or call: (215) 898-4299

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