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Specific grants and scholarships for foreign language study

Grants for foreign language study

As we mention in our article "Finding money for foreign language study 101", the best place to start looking for language-specific scholarships and grants is locally -- on your home campus or in your community. This is where you will have the best chances of getting free money to support your language studies.

Below are various national and international scholarship and grant contests for students of foreign languages. Just remember, however, that the wider you cast your net in search of scholarships, the larger the applicant pool will be. These are grants to support your language study at your home institution. Because there are many more available scholarships for study abroad, we have listed those on a separate page.

Finding money for language study
Top | On campus | At the library | Local organizations | Federal & state aid | Free online scholarship databases
Grants for language study | Study abroad scholarships | Graduate and post-graduate fellowships

Grants and scholarships for general language study

Phi Sigma Iota Scholarships: The national foreign language honor society Phi Sigma Iota offers 8 different scholarships each year. Applicants must be nominated by the faculty advisor of a local chapter of the honor society.
Level: undergraduate / Award amount: $300-$1000

Critical Language Scholarship Program: The United States Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs offers fully-funded intensive summer language institutes overseas for Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla/Bengali, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Turkish, and Urdu. Programs last 7 to 10 weeks each. Participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship period, and later apply their critical language skills in their future professional careers
Level: undergraduate and graduate / Award amount: covers travel, all program fees, room & board

CIA Undergraduate Scholarship Program: Not only foreign language majors may apply, but foreign languages are one of the example areas presented in the scholarship description. Recipients receive and annual salary, benefits package, fees and tuition of up to $18,000 / year, and expenses for books and supplies. In return, grantees work at a CIA facility during summer breaks with transportation costs to and from facilities paid and an additional summer housing allowance. Recipients also agree to continue working for the CIA after graduation for 1.5 times the length of the scholarship period.
Level: undergraduate / Award amount: varies

Grants and scholarships for specific languages

As already mentioned above, these types of scholarships tend to be local- and community-based initiatives. If you have a particular ethnic heritage, you may also be eligible for additional scholarships that are heritage based. See our instructions for finding local scholarship opportunities. Or go to our page on scholarships and grants for study abroad if you need financial assistance to fund a stay abroad.

A. Doak Barnett Memorial Essay Contest: Awards for US and Chinese graduate students or post-graduates for 1500-word essays dealing with topics related to US-China relations.
Level: graduate / Award amount: $1000

National Italian American Foundation Scholarship Program: Awards Italian American students or those students majoring or minoring in Italian language or a related field scholarships toward tuition and room and board at an accredited US college or university.
Level: undergraduate / Award amount: $2,500-$10,000

Grants and scholarships for any major

These are some college scholarships that are not limited to any particular major; hence, students studying foreign language majors are also eligible to apply. For the most part, these scholarships are very easy to apply for. Several have short online applications. Just taking the time to do so could help put you through college for free.

ACLU Youth Activist Scholarship Program: Applicants must be high school seniors planning to attend college who are committed to activism and defending civil liberties in their community. The 15 scholarship recipients will also attend the Youth Activist Institute at the ACLU National office in New York City
Level: high school senior / Award amount: $7000

Akademos / Scholarship Essay Contest: Any student enrolled in an accredited undergraduate or graduate program in the United States is eligible to participate. Students write short essays on a given topic that changes each semester as each new scholarship contest begins.
Level: graduate or undergraduate / Award amount: $250-$2000

All-Ink College Scholarship Program: Essay-writing contest, including 2 brief essays. Online application.
Level: undergraduate / graduate / Award amount: up to $5000

A. Patrick Charnon Memorial Scholarship: Recipients must be admitted or enrolled in a full-time undergraduate program of study in an accredited four-year college or university in the United States. They must maintain good academic standing and make progress toward a degree. The selection committee looks for candidates who value tolerance, compassion and respect for all people in their communities, and who have demonstrated their commitments to these values by their actions.
Level: undergraduate / Award amount: $1500

Ayn Rand Essay Contest: Applicants read a novel by Ayn Rand and write an essay in response to a given related topic. Essays must be between 1,000 and 1,200 words.
Level: undergraduate / graduate $50-$10,000

The Charles Shafae Scholarship / Papercheck Essay Contest: Applicants address a list of questions pertaining to a particular issue in an essay of 1000 words or more. Easy online application.
Level: undergraduate / Award amount: $500

Dale E. Fridell Memorial Scholarship: Easy, online application including responses to two brief essays.
Level: vocational / undergraduate / graduate / Award amount: $1000

Goetz Higher Education Scholarship: Awards are based on financial need and academic merit. Awardees show commitment to achieving educational goals.
Level: undergraduate / Award amount: $1000 - $2500 annually

The Institute for Humane Studies Grants & Competitions: Offers grants for research projects that explore the foundations of a free society.
Level: undergraduate or graduate / Award amount: $2000 - $12,000

Finding money for foreign language study 101
Grants for Foreign Language Study | Study Abroad Scholarships
Grants & Fellowships for Graduate & Postgraduate Foreign Language Study

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