FLAS Fellowships

The Institute for Global Studies offers Foreign Language & Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships in African, Asian, and International studies. The competition is open to undergraduate, graduate, and professional degree students to study a modern less-commonly-taught language (LCTL) in combination with area studies courses. There will be three distinct competitions (African studies, Asian studies, and International studies). Fellowships are available for the following modern foreign languages:

African Studies: Arabic, Somali, Swahili, Portuguese

Asian Studies: Arabic, Chinese, Hebrew, Hindi, Hmong, Japanese, Korean, Urdu

International Studies: Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, Finnish, Hebrew, Hindi, Hmong, Icelandic, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Somali, Swahili, Swedish, Urdu

Other languages may be approved on a case-by-case basis.

APPLICATION DEADLINE:  Monday, February 5, 2018 (11:59pm)


We are accepting applications for Academic Year 2018-2019 FLAS Fellowships, but actual awards will not be made until we have received notification from the US Department of Education that continued funding for AY 18-19 Fellowships is in place. At this point, we are unable to say when such notification might be forthcoming.  This does not affect the Summer 2018 FLAS competition and awards.

To be eligible for a FLAS fellowship, you must meet the following criteria:

  • US citizen or permanent resident
  • Students must be fully matriculated in a University of Minnesota Twin Cities degree program (any major/program) at the time of the award 
  • Undergraduate students must be at the intermediate level of their target language (this is equivalent to having completed one full year of college-level study)
  • Graduate and professional students may study a language at the beginning level only if you have reached an advanced level of another foreign language related to your specific field of study. Beginning-level FLAS fellowships are available only for language study in the United States.

Please see the FAQs for more information about eligibility and fellowship requirements.

Summer 2018 FLAS Fellowships

  • Undergraduates and graduates: living stipend of $2,500 and up to $5,000 in tuition and fees

Summer fellowships are intended for intensive language study domestically or abroad. Intensive language study is defined as program that offers at least 6 weeks of language instruction with 140 contact hours at the beginning (graduates only) or intermediate levels or 120 contact hours at the advanced level. Most UMN summer language courses meet these requirements.

Academic Year 2018–2019 FLAS Fellowships

  • Undergraduates: living stipend of $5,000 and up to $10,000 towards tuition and required fees
  • Graduates: living stipend of $15,000 and up to $18,000 towards tuition and required fees

Academic year fellows take one language course and one area studies course each semester. Only full year (9-month) fellowships are available.


Application Process

Please submit the following:

  • Completed Application Form 
  • Statement of purpose (limit to 500 words) explaining how this fellowship will help you further your academic and professional goals
  • Academic transcript(s) (unofficial is OK)
  • Letter of recommendation*
  • Language Certification Form completed by a language instructor who can accurately assess your current language level

The application form and language certification form should be filled out online. The statement of purpose and transcripts should be emailed to Lydia at flas@umn.edu. The recommendation letter can be emailed directly by faculty to flas@umn.edu.

*Notes on the recommendation letter: the letter of recommendation should be 1-2 pages, written by a teacher, advisor, or employer who can comment on the applicant's academic potential. This letter does not need to come from a language instructor and does not need to directly address the applicant's language skills. Rather, it should be a broad evaluation of the applicant's academic performance, motivation, potential, and interest in foreign language and area studies.

To learn more about the FLAS fellowships, please refer to the FLAS FAQs. If you have additional questions, contact Lydia Brosnahan by email at flas@umn.edu.