Critical Language Scholarship Program: Applications Now Accepted for 2020

The CLS Program ( is an intensive overseas language and cultural immersion program for American students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities. Students spend eight to ten weeks abroad studying one of 15 critical languages. The program includes intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences designed to promote rapid language gains. Most languages offered by the CLS Program (9 of 15) do not require applicants to have any experience studying critical languages.

CLS, a program of the U.S. Department of State, is part of a wider government initiative to expand the number of Americans studying and mastering foreign languages that are critical to national security and economic prosperity. CLS plays an important role in preparing students for the 21st century’s globalized workforce and increasing national competitiveness.

The CLS Program offers instruction in the following languages: Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Korean, Persian, Portuguese, Punjabi, Russian, Swahili, Turkish, and Urdu.

There will be a few upcoming webinars to provide more information for students. Please see the links below to register. It will also be recorded for those who are unable to attend.

Information for Students:

                Thursday, September 19, 3:00pm EST

                Register Now:

Information for Faculty, Staff, and Advisors:

                Friday, September 20, 3:00pm EST

                Register Now:

The CLS Program for Community College Students:

                Thursday, September 26, 3:00pm EST

                Register Now:

Diversity & Inclusion on the CLS Program:

                Friday, September 27, 3:00pm EST

                Register Now:

For other questions, please contact the CLS Program directly at:


Published by David J. Smith

I am a career coach, consultant, and head of a not for profit - the Forage Center - that offers humanitarian education training. I also teach at George Mason University and Drexel University. A one time lawyer, I spent many years teaching in a community college where I was a Fulbright U.S. Scholar teaching in Estonia. I'm the author of Peace Jobs: A Student's Guide to Starting a Career Working for Peace (IAP 2016). I've been married to my best friend for over 31 years and we have two well adjusted adult children who teach me something new everyday. I live in Rockville, Maryland.

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