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Critical Language Scholarship – Application Now Open – Info Session October 19

We are delighted to announce that the application is now open for the U. S. Department of State’s 2024 Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program, including its virtual initiative, CLS Spark! U.S. undergraduate and graduate students are eligible to apply to study a critical language on a funded overseas or virtual summer program.  The application is available at deadline for applications is 8:00 pm Eastern Standard Time on Tuesday, November 14, 2023.

The CLS Program includes intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences designed to promote rapid language gains.  Depending on language and level, U.S. students can either apply for the overseas CLS Program or its virtual program — CLS Spark.  The CLS Program offers in-person cohort-based programs at partner institutions abroad that provide instruction at various levels for U.S. graduate and undergraduate students in over a dozen critical languages: Arabic, Azerbaijani, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Swahili, Turkish, and Urdu. CLS Spark provides beginner-level virtual instruction to U.S. undergraduate students in Arabic, Chinese, and Russian, specifically targeting students whose home campuses do not offer these languages.  Information on eligibility is available at:  

An in-person Information Session will be held on Thursday, October 19 from 5:00 – 6:00 pm in Kresge 2-410. No RSVP necessary. Please join us to learn more about CLS. (flyer attached)

The CLS Program will host frequent webinars, Q&A sessions, and alumni panels for students throughout the fall. A full calendar with these events and corresponding registration links is available at:

The CLS Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, with funding provided by the U.S. Government and supported in its implementation by American Councils for International Education. It is part of a wider government initiative to expand the number of Americans studying and mastering foreign languages that are critical to U.S. national security, economic prosperity, and engagement with the world. The CLS Program plays an important role in preparing students for the 21st century’s globalized workforce and increasing national competitiveness.


If you have any questions, please contact the CLS Program team at:

For help with your application materials, contact Amy Kehoe in the Office of Fellowships by scheduling an appointment through ConnectNU or by emailing Past winning essays are available for review in the Office of Fellowships, 1940 Sheridan Road.