Boren Awards for International Study




The Boren Awards provide up to $30,000 to study abroad in areas of the world that are critical to U.S. interests and underrepresented in study abroad, including Africa, Asia, Central & Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East. The program focuses on geographic areas, languages, and fields of study deemed critical to U.S. national security, broadly defined to include a wide range of global challenges, including sustainable development, environmental degradation, global disease and hunger, population growth and migration, and economic competitiveness.


Boren Scholarships and Fellowships provide funding opportunities for US undergraduate and graduate students to study less commonly taught languages in world regions critical to US interests.

Award amounts range from $8,000 for summer programs for STEM students, up to $20,000 for full-year undergraduate student programs or $30,000 for full-year graduate students proposals.  These monetary awards may be used for any and all program-related costs, and graduate students may spend up to $10,000 on pre-departure language study.

In addition, Boren Scholars and Fellows receive special advising, career development, and resources for pursuing employment at federal agencies following their award terms.

Eligibility criteria

The Boren Awards are open to US citizens who are currently enrolled in an accredited US degree program.  The Boren Scholarship is open to undergraduate students; the Boren Fellowship is open to graduate students.  Boren Award recipients must remain enrolled in their degree programs for the duration of their award term.

Award requirements

Recipients of a Boren Scholarship accept a Service Requirement that stipulates that an award recipient work in the Federal Government in a position with national security responsibilities. The Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, and State, or any element of the Intelligence Community are priority agencies. If an award recipient demonstrates to NSEP that no appropriate position is available in one of these agencies, the award recipient must seek to fulfill the requirement in a position with national security responsibilities in any Federal department or agency.

Recipients have fulfilled their Service Requirement in a wide variety of federal offices. Sometimes these positions include traditional national security responsibilities, but oftentimes these jobs are unique in their connection to national security.

Selection criteria

The Boren Awards program does have certain preferences for languages of study, countries of study, and duration of study.  Generally speaking, applicants are expected to study a non-Western European language that is commonly taught in the US, and Boren Scholarships and Fellowships promote long-term linguistic and cultural immersion, and therefore study abroad proposals for two or more semesters are strongly encouraged. Preference will be given to undergraduate applicants proposing a full-year academic study.

For further information on the program preferences, consult the Boren Awards website (

Application Process

Boren Scholarships and Fellowships provide unique funding opportunities for U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to study less commonly taught languages in world regions critical to U.S. interests, and underrepresented in study abroad, including Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East. The Boren Awards emphasize long-term linguistic and cultural study, as well as research and academic internships abroad. Study of a foreign language appropriate to the country or region is an integral part of each Boren Scholar and Fellow's plan.

Boren Scholars and Fellows represent a vital pool of highly motivated individuals who wish to work in the federal national security arena. In exchange for scholarship and fellowship funding, Boren Award recipients commit to working in the federal government for at least one year after graduation.

Students interested in applying must work with LWFONSA and be nominated by ASU.  Applicants will participate in interviews with committees comprised of faculty members selected for their expertise in geographic regions and politics.

The campus deadline is the first week in January.  Please contact LWFONSA for more details at (480) 727-8204 or

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  • Foreign Language Study
  • Government Service
  • International Study or Experience
  • Professional Development


  • International Affairs
  • National Security
  • Peace and Conflict Resolution
  • Public Service
  • STEM

Eligible applicants

  • First-year Undergrads
  • Second-year Undergrads
  • Third-year Undergrads
  • Fourth-year+ Undergrads
  • Graduate Students


  • Veterans

Citizenship status

  • US Citizen

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