The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program is a fully-funded overseas language and cultural immersion program for American undergraduate and graduate students. With the goal of broadening the base of Americans studying and mastering critical languages and building 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 CLS Program is a program of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
- 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.
- Your program must result in a degree. Applicants who are taking stand-alone or continuing education classes are not eligible.
- Your institution must be physically located in the United States or its territories. Students earning degrees at foreign colleges or universities are not eligible. Students earning degrees at U.S.-basedinstitutions located abroad are not eligible.
- You must be enrolled at your home college or university in the Fall Semester of 2014
- If you are not taking classes at your home institution in the fall semester, please confirm that you are, in fact, enrolled.
- Be at least 18 years old.
- Be in acceptable mental and physical health. Grantees will be required to submit a satisfactory Medical Information Form and Physician’s statement and must inform the program of any changes in their health status in order to participate in the program.
- Undergraduate students must have completed at least one academic year of study (two semesters or three quarters).
- In order to participate in the CLS Program, finalists must receive an appropriate visa from their country of study (deadlines vary by country).
- The decision to issue a visa rests solely with the government and consular mission of the country to which a student is travelling. The CLS Program, American Councils for International Education and the U.S. Department of State will assist you with your visa application, but cannot influence a foreign government’s decision of whether or not to issue a visa.
- CLS Program finalists and, in some cases, alternates may be required to work closely with CLS Program staff on preparing their paperwork well in advance of regular deadlines in order to receive a visa.
The CLS Program is part of a U.S. government effort to expand dramatically the number of Americans studying and mastering critical foreign languages. Students of diverse disciplines and majors are encouraged to apply. Participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship period, and later apply their critical language skills in their future professional careers. Please visit the CLS Institutes page for more information.
- Azerbaijani, Bangla/Bengali, Hindi, Indonesian, Korean, Punjabi, Turkish, and Urdu: Beginning, advanced beginning, intermediate and advanced levels;
- Arabic and Persian: Advanced beginning, intermediate and advanced levels;
- Chinese, Japanese, and Russian: Intermediate and advanced levels.
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