As college and graduate students seek financial aid to study a foreign language, they should remember to have a talk with Uncle Sam.
The US Department of Education, for example, offers Foreign Language Area Studies fellowships to train graduate students in language and international studies. Candidates apply at their university or college, and those who are awarded fellowships, based on merit, receive a stipend to study for a year or a summer.
The National Security Education Program is another option. Funded by the Department of Defense, the program awards fellowships and scholarships to graduate and undergraduate students to study languages and cultures.
"[T]he scope of national security has expanded to include ... the new challenges of global society," a department statement says, "including, sustainable development, environmental degradation, population growth and migration, and economic competitiveness."
The government loosely defines its preferred languages (Asian ones are hot right now). Students choose both a main and secondary field of study, and must work for the government after the program, typically for one or two years.
* Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowships: Office of Postsecondary Education, Center for International Education, US Department of Education, 600 Independence Ave. SW, Washington, DC, 20202
Academy for Educational Development, The National Security Education Program,1875 Connecticut Avenue NW Suite 900, Washington, DC, 20009