Critical Language Scholarship Program

Application deadline:   November 23, 2015

The CLS Program is a program of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. It is a fully-funded overseas language program for American undergraduate and graduate students. With the goal of broadening the base of Americans studying and mastering critical languages and to build relationships between the people of the United States and other countries, CLS provides study opportunities to a diverse range of students from across the United States at every level of language learning.

The fourteen CLS languages are: Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Swahili, Turkish, and Urdu.

Please note that participants in the CLS Program are not required to have any experience studying critical languages for most of the fourteen languages. Arabic, Chinese, Persian, Russian, and Japanese institutes have language prerequisites, which can be found on the CLS website: http://www.clscholarship.org/information-for/applicants.

The CLS Program seeks participants with diverse interests, from a wide variety of fields of study, backgrounds and career paths, with the purpose of representing the full diversity of professional, regional, cultural and academic backgrounds in the United States. Thus, students from all academic disciplines, including business, engineering, law, medicine, science, social sciences, arts and humanities are encouraged to apply.

Applicants must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen. (Non-citizens including Permanent Residents are not eligible, even if they anticipate naturalization by the beginning of the program.)
  • Be enrolled in an accredited U.S. degree-granting program at the undergraduate (associate’s, bachelor’s) or graduate (master’s, doctoral, professional degree) level.

There is no service requirement for CLS Alumni after the program. However, participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship period, and later apply their critical language skills in their professional careers. Participants are selected based on their commitment to language learning and plans to apply their language skills to their future academic or professional pursuits.

Please note that CLS is an intensive group-based language program.

Prior to preparing their application, interested students should review the full eligibility and application information on the CLS Program website: http://www.clscholarship.org/information-for/applicants

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