Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship

Fostering innovation.

At Qualcomm, research and development is a strong focus. It enables us to foster new ideas which ultimately lead to future technology advancements and growth. That focus is also what led us to want to partner with University PhD students, in order to cultivate new and forward thinking ideas and continue to further research and development overall. In an effort to establish a forum for Qualcomm and students to engage routinely, we created the Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship (QIF) program, which invests in University PhD students and their forward thinking ideas.

The QIF program is focused on recognizing, rewarding, and mentoring innovative PhD students across a broad range of technical research areas, based on Qualcomm’s core values of innovation, execution and teamwork. QIF enables graduate students to be mentored by our engineers and supports them in their quest towards achieving their research goals.

We are also proud of the fact that our program has experienced continued growth with over 100 proposals submitted each year in the US and international combined and has awarded over $15 million dollars since it started in 2009 at Qualcomm’s Research Center in Silicon Valley, California.

The QIF program is open to students from a preselected variety of top US based and international schools. Students are encouraged to apply and submit a proposal on any innovative idea of their choice. Qualcomm Research’s top engineers carefully review submitted proposals and select the QIF finalists, who are then invited to present their proposals to a panel of executive judges. Winning students earn a one year fellowship and are mentored by our engineers to facilitate the success of the proposed research.

The QIF program has brought Qualcomm and the students we’ve worked with a great deal of enjoyment, from the diversity, quality and innovation of proposals, to meeting finalists and collaborating with top winning teams and advisors. We look forward to QIF’s continued success and growth in the coming years and hope each participating team will succeed in bringing their research goals to reality.

The program, rules for application, and the selection of winning students vary slightly per country. For further details, prospective applicants are invited to refer to the location-specific QIF links below.

QIF Programs

North America

  • US East Coast: Carnegie Mellon, Columbia, Cornell, Georgia Institute of Technology, MIT, Princeton, Rutgers, University of Maryland-College Park, University of Michigan, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
  • US Central: UIUC, University of Texas at Austin, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Purdue University
  • US West Coast: California Institute of Technology, Stanford, UC Berkeley, UCLA, UCSB, UCSD, USC, University of Washington
  • Canada: University of Montreal, University of Toronto


  • Belgium: University of Leuven
  • Germany: Max Planck Institute - Saarbrücken, Technical University of Berlin, Technical University of Darmstadt, Technical University of Munich 
  • Ireland: Trinity College Dublin
  • Netherlands: Delft University of Technology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • Switzerland: EPF Lausanne, ETH Zürich
  • United Kingdom: Imperial College London, University of Cambridge, University of Oxford


  • Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
  • Indian Institute of Technology, BHU
  • Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay
  • Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi
  • Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati
  • Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur
  • Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur
  • Indian Institute of Technology, Madras
  • Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee
  • Indian Institute of Technology, Hyderabad
  • Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata
  • Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology, Delhi
  • International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad


  • South Korea

Fellowship Winners and Finalists

The Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship began in 2009, and has continued to grow with the addition of more universities, more candidates, and expansion to our research centers internationally. Take a look at a list of all our fellowship winners and finalists from years past: