Buddhist Studies Scholarship

Scholarships for individuals who wish to study the dharma in a formal setting, such as a university or institute.

Individual Practice Grant

Grants to support people who wish to deepen their practice of the dharma. This program supports individuals who plan to do retreat, to attend teachings, or to practice in other ways.

PhD Scholarship

Scholarships to support people who are in a PhD program in Buddhist Studies, doing research for their PhD degree, or writing a doctoral dissertation.


Ashoka Grant

Grants to support organizations and individuals working to increase dharma activity in creative and long-lasting ways.

Trisong Grant

Grants to support people and projects promoting general well-being, mental health, and natural resilience, based on Buddhist views and practices.


Awards for excellence in Buddhist Studies, translation, service to the dharma, and more.

Work as Practice Scholarship

Scholarships to support people who wish to acquire the practical skills they need to benefit a dharma center, monastery, or sangha.

Apply for Support

Supporting Buddhist study and practice is at the heart of Khyentse Foundation’s mission, and our Ashoka grant and scholarship programs are the way we connect with you and learn about your work. There are a number of ways to apply, and we support a wide range of dharma studies, practice, and activities. We accept applications from Buddhist teachers, students, scholars, translators, practitioners, and retreatants. In the nonsectarian spirit of the Khyentse lineage, our applicants represent all Buddhist traditions and are from all parts of the world. Each application is reviewed by international review committees, appointed by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche.

Khyentse Foundation aims to create the conditions for children to encounter the dharma and for Buddha’s wisdom to arise. Educators are encouraged to apply for any of the grants and scholarships that the foundation offers. We are seeking opportunities to support educators who are working to bring Buddhist wisdom to themselves and to their classrooms. Grants might be for publishing children’s books, for camps or after-school programs, or for educators’ study or retreat programs. To see what program might be best for you, read about our Ashoka Grant (link) program or our Individual Practice Grant (link). A special committee reviews the Ashoka Grant applications for education projects.

Have questions about which program is right for you?
Check out our FAQ’s or contact [email protected] (for scholarships programs) or [email protected] (for Ashoka or Trisong Grants).


Q: Can I apply for both a scholarship and a grant in the same round of applications?
A: No, you may apply for only one scholarship or grant program at a time.

Q: How often can I apply for a scholarship?
A: If you have not received a scholarship from Khyentse Foundation, you may apply as often as you like (we accept applications twice a year). If you have received a scholarship, you may apply again after one year, but you must complete the progress report section of the application.

Q: Is there a limit to the amount off support I can apply for?
A: Scholarships awards are usually in the range of US$500 to $5,000, but applicants can request any amount. Ashoka Grants have no amount limit, but large awards depend on the strength of the application.

Q: How do I know if I’m eligible for a KF scholarship or grant?
A: The KF scholarship program supports the study and practice of Buddhadharma. Candidates for a Khyentse Foundation Scholarship might be:

  • An individual enrolled in a degree program in Buddhist Studies
  • A person studying Tibetan for the purpose of becoming a translator
  • An individual attending a group retreat

Projects that don’t include study or practice might be better suited for an Ashoka Grant:

  • Publishing or translating a text (as individuals or groups)
  • A Buddhist education program for childrenKhyentse Foundation does not support building or construction projects. At this time, we are also not accepting applications for film projects.

Q: Can I apply if I want to do pilgrimage?
A: KF supports travel for pilgrimage and retreats through Individual Practice Grants.

Q: Do I need to match KF funds with my own funds?
A: Generally, we appreciate a personal contribution toward your studies, retreat, or project. Having other funding strengthens your application.

Q: Can I apply for KF funding for study at Rangjung Yeshe Institute (RYI)?
A: KF accepts PhD or Translation Studies Scholarships applications for study at RYI.

Buddhist Studies Scholarship (BSS) applicants who wish to study at RYI must apply directly to RYI, through a scholarship partnership that is managed by RYI. KF accepts BSS applications only for summer programs at RYI; all other BSS applications for study at RYI must be sent directly to RYI.

Q: What are the deadlines for the scholarships and grants?
A: We accept applications for Buddhist Studies Scholarships, Individual Practice Grants, and Work as Practice Grants twice a year, from December 15 to January 15 and from June 15 to July 15. We also accept applications for Ashoka Grants twice a year, from January 15 to February 15 and from July 15 to August 15. You may apply for a Translation Studies Scholarships annually, from February 1 to March 1, and you may apply for a PhD Program Scholarship annually, from June 15 to July 15.

Q: Can I apply for a Translation Studies Scholarship (TSS) as a novice translator?
A:  You are expected to have some translation experience or to be working in your field as a translator before being considered for a TSS. The TSS program supports candidates in advanced degrees programs (MA, MPhil, or PhD) in the study of translation or in Buddhist philosophy. In general, we support the study of the traditional canonical languages of Tibetan, Sanskrit, and Pali, for translation into modern languages. If you don’t meet these criteria, you may apply for a Buddhist Studies Scholarship.

Q: How can I know if my project is eligible for an Ashoka Grant?

A: Ashoka Grants are given to a wide range of Buddhist projects and programs. The foundation does not accept the following types of applications:

  • Funding for building and construction projects
  • Applications that are incomplete or that do not adequately explain the scope of the project
  • Applications that have no relevance to Buddhism or Buddhist activity
  • Applications for film projects

Q: How long will it take to hear back after I apply?

A: The review process for Ashoka grants and scholarships is 3 to 4 months, starting at the application deadline. Projects and study programs should fit this timeline and start after the notification date.

Q: How long is the period of funding?

A: All Ashoka grants and scholarships are for a period of one year. Beneficiaries can apply for further support at the end of the grant or scholarship period.

Q: How many Ashoka Grant applications can I submit in one round?

A: Only one application will be accepted on behalf of an individual or organization per cycle.

Deer Park Institute


In 2006, Rinpoche established Deer Park Institute (DPI) in Bir, India, at the foothills of the Himalayas. Rinpoche’s vision to revive ancient Nalanda University’s spirit of open and deep inquiry into Buddhadharma. Students from around the world come to DPI to listen, contemplate, meditate, and experience the teachings. Khyentse Foundation has been funding the operation of Deer Park since its inception and is very glad to witness its rapid growth and its gradual path towards financial independence through donation (dana) from participants and grants from various sources, including the Indian government.

University of California at Berkeley




In 2006, the University of California, Berkeley announced the establishment of the KF Distinguished Professorship in Tibetan Buddhism, thanks to a $1 million endowment from Khyentse Foundation. Learn more about the KF-UC Berkeley collaboration over the years: https://khyentsefoundation.org/focus/focus_july15.html.


Eötvös Loránd University

In 2016, Khyentse Foundation made a commitment to fund Buddhist Studies programs at the Institute of East Asian Studies at Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE) in Budapest, Hungary. With this funding the university will establish an additional faculty position and offer more courses in Buddhism and Tibetan language to the university’s BA students. The new faculty member will also lead the development of an MA program in Buddhist Studies and coordinate the activities of their newly created Budapest Center of Buddhist Studies.

University of Sydney: KF-UBEF Lectureship

In 2017 Khyentse Foundation celebrated a groundbreaking partnership with the University of Sydney in Australia, establishing a new academic position in Tibetan Buddhist Studies. The lectureship is jointly funded by KF and UBEF (University Buddhist Education Foundation) with support from the Aberbaldie Foundation. Thanks to the KF-UBEF Lectureship and the courses to be offered through it, the University of Sydney now offers the most comprehensive Buddhist Studies program in the Australasian region and in the Southern Hemisphere.

Rangjung Yeshe Institute: Matching Funds Program

In 2016, Khyentse Foundation awarded a grant of $20,000 USD to Rangjung Yeshe Institute in Nepal to support its financial aid program. It is a matching funds program by which Khyentse Foundation matches the contribution from Rangjung Yeshe Institute.

University of Pennsylvania: KF Award for Excellence in Buddhist Studies

2016 KF Award for Excellence in Buddhist Studies Recipient: Paul McBain

Paul McBain is a second-year PhD student in the Department of Religious Studies, focusing on comparative Buddhist poetry in Japan and Thailand. He speaks Japanese and Thai and studies Sanskrit and Pali. He is also a student of religion and literary theory. His BA is from Oxford University and his MA is from the University of Chicago. His latest project is on the life and work of Thailand’s most famous poet, Sunthorn Phu.

Tokyo University of Arts: Chinese Artist Studies Restoration Arts in Japan

Han Weimeng received a KF Ashoka Grant for the 2014-2015 academic year at the Tokyo University of Arts. The grant enabled him to complete a Master of Arts course in traditional Japanese painting. His goals were to acquire traditional copying techniques of Japanese murals and to enhance Buddhist art preservation skills.

Pal Ewam Namgon Nunnery School

The Pal Ewam Namgon Nunnery School was established in 2011 to provide free Buddhist and secular modern education to underprivileged or orphaned girls in the remote Himalayan region of Mustang, a district of Nepal. Currently the school is home to 39 nuns from around Nepal. KF contributes to the education of these young women by funding the salaries of several of the school’s teachers.

Mongolian Buddhist Women’s Conference

In 2015, the Mongolian Buddhist Women’s Conference brought together 300 Mongolian Buddhist women who were active in their local communities, both rural and urban, to share their experiences, aspirations, and challenges, to learn from each other, and to establish common goals and cooperation. A Khyentse Foundation grant helped to cover travel assistance and stipends to women from rural areas who otherwise might not have been able to attend, as well as meals and rental of the conference space.

Focus Reentry

Focus Reentry is a mentoring program founded on Buddhist principles that offers free counseling and help in securing resources to meet the immediate needs of offenders who are reentering society. Khyentse Foundation has been supporting Focus Reentry since 2012. A 2014-2015 KF grant helped the organization to serve people in two capacities: Human Needs and Mentor Support.

Sri Lanka International Buddhist Academy

Khyentse Foundation supported Ven. Bhante Buddharakkhita (Steven Kaboggoza, from Uganda) in his B.A. studies in Buddhist Leadership at Sri Lanka International Buddhist Academy, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

Sarah College

Sahil Kumar received scholarships in 2011 through 2014 to study at Sarah College in Dharamsala. She writes, “I am fully committed to learn Buddhist Philosophy so that I could serve Indian Buddhists. Thanks a lot to Khyentse Foundation for giving me scholarship by which I am learning the Buddhism.”

National Cheng Chi University

Khyentse Foundation currently partners with Buddhist Studies programs at thirteen universities on four continents to encourage excellence in Buddhist scholarship. National Cheng Chi University is one of our partners.

Khmer-Buddhist Education Assistance Program

KF has developed partnership with the Khmer-Buddhist Education Assistance Program (KEAP) in Cambodia to support recovery of the Theravada lineage of the Cambodian sangha through higher education of qualified monks.

Karma Tekchen Yi Ong Ling Retreat Centre

KF helped to support Rene Vejvoda in a three-year retreat at Karma Tekchen Yi Ong Ling Retreat Centre in Germany.

Bodhi Kids

Inside-Out Prison Project

Light of Buddhadharma Foundation International

Preah Sihanouk Raja Buddhist University

Ven. Bhante Buddharakkhita

Dr. Chao Tung-Ming, KF Award for Outstanding PhD Dissertation

Visiting Professor Program

The Mani Foundation

University of Vienna

International Association for Tibetan Studies

Meditation Camp for Bhutanese Teachers

Rice University

Bhutan Nuns Foundation

KF Prize for Outstanding Translation

KF Scholarship Recipient: Luke Younge




In 2009 with the support of a KF scholarship, Luke Younge completed two summer courses of study at Nitartha Institute in the United States. Luke is bringing a systematic two-year Buddhist studies program to Cape Town and Johannesburg. Read more about his journey here.

Chantaloube Retreat Centre

Siddhartha's School

University of British Columbia

Chilean Dharma student scholarship to RYI

TBRC, Cambridge, MA

University of Hamburg: Khyentse Center for Tibetan Buddhist Textual Scholarship

In January 2011 with the support of a grant from the Khyentse Foundation, Professor Dorji Wangchuk established the Khyentse Center for Tibetan Buddhist Textual Scholarship in the Department of Indian and Tibetan Studies, Asia-Africa Institute, University of Hamburg. The center is devoted to scholarly investigation of Tibetan texts, primarily Buddhist.

University of Peking

Warnum Nuns Retreat

Santi Sena

University of Kelanya, Sri Lanka

Chulalongkorn University, Thailand

University of of Edinburgh, Scotland

Fu Dan University, China

Palestinian Dharma student grant

Tovana's Israeli Youth Dharma Project: Meditation for Young Adults in Rehovot



The project began with a pilot mini-retreat, focused on meditation and introduction to Buddhism. The mini-retreat was partially silent and included introduction to Vipassana meditation, sitting and walking meditation sessions, an introduction to the Buddha-Dharma and inter-personal exercises. The second phase was a ten – week’s course, attended by fourteen participants that took place in a community center in Rehovot.

Patrick Dowd's Bhoti Ethical Education Textbook Project

KF is supporting Patrick Dowd‘s Bhoti Ethical Education Textbook Project in developing a set of textbooks for students in the traditionally Buddhist region of Leh, India.