Critical Language Scholarship (CLS)
Dates and Deadlines
Scholarship application deadline:
November 16, 2016 5pm
Winners participate in an 8-10 week summer intensive language program overseas for U.S. academic credit, with all costs provided by the U.S. Department of State. Program expenses include language courses, room and board (often with a host family), cultural programs, host community language partners, U.S. academic credit, domestic and international airfare, and a small stipend.
- U.S. Citizen
- Be at least 18 years old
- Be in acceptable mental and physical health
- Completed at least one academic year of study prior to participating in the CLS program
The CLS seeks to broaden the base of American studying languages that are critical to the U.S. Department of State. The program aims for participants to gain the equivalent of one year of language acquisition through the scholarship. The following languages are offered and require the equivalent amount of study to be eligible:
- No previous study: Azerbaijani, Bangla, Hindi, Indonesian, Korean, Punjabi, Swahili, Turkish, Urdu
- One year previous study: Arabic, Persian
- Two years previous study: Chinese, Japanese, Russian
Program sites and dates vary by language. Interested applicants should review the program information as some dates may conflict with the UC Davis academic schedule.
The CLS Program seeks participants with diverse interests, and from a wide range of fields of study and career paths, with the purpose of representing the full diversity of professional, regional, cultural and academic backgrounds in the United States. Participants are selected based on their commitment to language learning and plans to apply their language skills to their future academic or professional pursuits.
Applicants need to meet the required language levels, though many languages do not require previous study. Strong applicants will also show interest in the host culture through previous activities outside of the classroom (cultural clubs, conversation partners, etc.).
Award recipients are selected on the basis of merit with consideration for:
- Academic record and potential to succeed in a rigorous academic setting
- Ability to adapt to a different cultural environment
- Plan for continuation of study of the language
- Plan to use the language in future career
Applicants must submit two letters of recommendation from academic advisors, current or past professors, or someone who knows the applicant in a professional or volunteer capacity. All letter writers should speak to the applicants suitability for the CLS program, particularly the attributes above that are used to select award recipients.
Applicants may apply directly to the CLS program through their website. Applicants seeking advising should contact Scott Palmer to set up a meeting. If you wish to have your application reviewed, send it to Scott Palmer at least one month prior to the deadline.