Critical Language Scholarship Program | Alumni
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Alumni are central to the mission of the CLS Program. CLS alumni go on to do a wide variety of great things with their language skills and cultural knowledge, both academically and professionally. In addition to providing information about the program to colleagues, classmates, and people in their communities, CLS Program alumni play a key role in preparing prospective applicants and finalists and serving as citizen ambassadors of their study abroad experiences.

CLS Alum­ni Society

The Crit­i­cal Lan­guage Schol­ar­ship Alum­ni Soci­ety (CLSAS) is an inde­pen­dent orga­ni­za­tion led by CLS alum­ni that pro­vides alum­ni with avenues for pro­fes­sion­al devel­op­ment, com­mu­ni­ty engage­ment, and lan­guage reten­tion. The asso­ci­a­tion serves as an advo­cate for the con­tin­ued advance­ment of crit­i­cal lan­guage stud­ies and cul­tur­al exchange in the U.S. and abroad. 

There are a variety of ways to stay connected to CLS alumni and the CLS Program including the following:

  • Join the CLS Program Official Alumni Group on LinkedIn
  • Join the CLS Program Alumni Group on Facebook along with your language Facebook group
  • Create an account at to pursue opportunities for alumni of U.S. Department of State exchange program alumni
  • Keep CLS Program staff up-to-date on your changes in contact information and share news with us via this form, by emailing us, or by calling us at (202) 833-7522

Alum­ni Ambassadors

CLS Alum­ni Ambas­sadors are recent CLS par­tic­i­pants who take lead­er­ship roles as active rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the CLS Program. 

Alum­ni Devel­op­ment Fund

Each year, the CLS Alum­ni Devel­op­ment Fund (ADF) offers small grants to alum­ni of the CLS Pro­gram through a com­pet­i­tive appli­ca­tion process. The ADF is designed to pro­vide oppor­tu­ni­ties for alum­ni to con­tin­ue their lan­guage learn­ing, pur­sue career devel­op­ment goals, and par­tic­i­pate in com­mu­ni­ty out­reach relat­ed to CLS lan­guages and their cor­re­spond­ing world regions. 

Alum­ni Sup­port Network

As the Crit­i­cal Lan­guage Schol­ar­ship Pro­gram con­tin­ues to grow, we want to ensure new par­tic­i­pants have access to a vari­ety of sup­port for the unique and var­ied chal­lenges they may face dur­ing their time abroad. One of our most sig­nif­i­cant resources for assist­ing new stu­dents is our deep pool of alum­ni who have expe­ri­ence on the CLS Pro­gram in dif­fer­ent coun­tries and sites, and a vari­ety of over­seas expe­ri­ence to share with new students.

Re-entry Resources

The learn­ing process doesn’t end when CLS Pro­gram par­tic­i­pants com­plete their time abroad on the CLS Pro­gram. Dur­ing the re-entry phase, pro­gram par­tic­i­pants often ben­e­fit from oppor­tu­ni­ties to con­tin­ue com­mit­ment to the lan­guage and to process all that they learned while abroad. We offer resources to alum­ni eager to inte­grate their CLS expe­ri­ence back into their per­son­al, aca­d­e­m­ic, and pro­fes­sion­al lives.

Spread­ing the Word

CLS Alum­ni are instru­men­tal in our out­reach efforts to prospec­tive appli­ca­tions regard­ing the pro­gram. Because CLS is a rel­a­tive­ly young ini­tia­tive, there are still many qual­i­fied stu­dents at col­leges and uni­ver­si­ties across the U.S. who have not heard of the pro­gram. We rely heav­i­ly on CLS infor­ma­tion ses­sions to help get the word out to these stu­dents, as well as to the fac­ul­ty and staff at their insti­tu­tions who will help to pro­mote the pro­gram to new stu­dents for years to come.