Critical Language Scholarship Program (CLS)


The Critical Language Scholarship Program (CLS) is a fully-funded overseas language and cultural immersion program for American undergraduate and graduate students. With the goal of broadening the base of Americans studying and mastering critical languages and building relationships between the people of the United States and other countries, CLS provides opportunities to a diverse range of students from across the United States at every level of language learning.

Languages: Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Portuguese, Punjabi, Russian, Swahili, Turkish and Urdu.

Programs range from seven to 10 weeks, beginning in early to mid-June with a pre-departure orientation in the U.S. Students must attend the full program and participate in all program activities. Students in all disciplines including business, engineering, law, medicine, sciences and humanities are encouraged to apply.


  • Campus Deadline: A campus nomination is not required, but prospective applicants are encouraged to consult with Megan Stewart in advance of the deadline.
  • External Deadline: November 

Eligibility Requirements

  • U.S. citizenship.
  • Current undergraduate or graduate student at UB (in any major).

Language experience varies; typically, previous language experience is not required.

How to Apply

Students must complete the online application on the Critical Language Scholarship Program website and submit two letters of recommendation.

Campus Liaison

Megan Stewart

Past Award Recipients at UB

Year Name Award
2020 Brian Kwong Recipient
2019 Jonathan Bessette
Connor MacMahon
2019 Ashwaq Asfour
Kayleigh Hamernik
2018 Jenny Simon
Ethan Wolfson-Seely
2017 Kayleigh Hamernik
Hanna Santanam
2016 Anna Blatto
Kayleigh Reed
2015 Nida Syed Recipient
2012 Amanda Buonopane
Breana Limina
Matthew Zambito
2011 Jill Ricotta
Karl Sarvestani
2010 Amanda Barbour Recipient
2008 Sarajane Gomlak-Green
Megan MacDonald
Christine Slocum