Academic Fellowships

Critical Language Scholarship

The Critical Language Scholarship Program is a summer study abroad opportunity for students to learn languages that are critical to America’s political and economic development. The CLS Program seeks students of all disciplines and majors who want to participate in learning new languages or further develop their language skills to advance their future education and professional careers. Scholars participate in a 8-10 week intensive instruction and structured cultural enrichment designed to promote rapid language gains. 

Languages offered include: Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Portuguese, Punjabi, Russian, Swahili, Turkish, and Urdu. While some CLS abroad programs require previous knowledge, such as Chinese and Japanese, other language programs do not require any previous instruction experience, such as Persian and Swahili. You can learn a whole new language abroad! 

The Academic Fellowships Team is here to support you through all steps of the application process. If you are interested in connecting with us to learn more, please contact us at


  • US Citizen or U.S. National
  • Complete at least 1 year of academic study before the program starts
  • See eligibility limitations based on parent or spousal government employment on the CLS website

Application Timeline

  • National Deadline: November 2022


  • 8-10 weeks of expenses-paid studying abroad
  • Formal classroom instruction of a language
  • One-on-one meetings with native speakers for conversational practice
  • Cost covered for excursions and cultural activities to expand your language and cultural knowledge