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Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS)

FLAS Fellowships to study Southeast Asian Languages

Application Deadline: February 3, 2014Veggie-mobile (Edmund Oh)

(Image courtesy of Edmund Oh, PhD Candidate in Development Sociology)

Cornell’s Southeast Asia Program (SEAP) is one of only seven National Resource Centers designated by the US Department of Education (USDE) focusing on the languages and cultures of Southeast Asia. As such, SEAP is able to offer Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowships (FLAS) funded by the USDE under Title VI to assist undergraduate and graduate students to acquire a high level of competence in each of Cornell’s approved less commonly taught “priority” Southeast Asian Languages: Burmese, Indonesian, Khmer (Cambodian), Tagalog, Thai and Vietnamese.

FLAS were originally provided to address Cold War issues; today, the USDE surveys across federal departments to identify their needs for employees with advanced competency. In the most recent survey, the Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Labor, State, Defense, Transportation and Treasury reported they require expertise in one or more of these languages. This does not include the additional needs in private industry, non-governmental agencies (here or in the region), or specialized professions.

Today, Southeast Asia’s porous borders, large Muslim populations, strategic position between India and China, its natural resources, and emerging markets and economies will drive an ever increasing demand for experts on the region with exceptional language skills. Therefore, SEAP is pleased to be able to offer the fellowships outlined below. It is through language competence that greater awareness and sensitivity about other cultures can be realized.

SEAP provides multiple FLAS opportunities.  Applicants must submit a separate application for each opportunity for which they wish to be considered. The application process is online (except for transcripts); incoming students without net IDs must request an account from the Einaudi Center. Click here for full instructions and the application link.

Academic Year 2014 – 2015 FLAS fellowships provide:

  • Eight Graduate Student Fellowships which include funds toward tuition (estimated at $18,000) and a stipend (estimated at $15,000) for each fellow to study any one of the languages listed above at the beginning level or above. Professional school students are strongly encouraged to apply. In many colleges/professional schools, the remaining tuition and stipend amounts are "topped-off."
  • One Undergraduate Student Fellowship which provides funds toward the undergraduate funding package for the fellow to study any one of the languages listed above at the intermediate level or above.  

Summer 2014 FLAS fellowships provide:

Tuition and fees to attend Southeast Asian Studies Summer Institute (SEASSI)  a stipend of $2,500. SEASSI is located at the University of Wisconsin in Madison.

Please note that SEAP and SEASSI both require applications to SEASSI to facilitate the highest possible acceptance and enrollment in this intensive summer language program.

  • Two to Three Graduate Student Fellowships to study Burmese, Filipino, Hmong, Indonesian, Javanese, Khmer, Lao, Thai or Vietnamese at the beginning level or above.  
  • Two to Three Undergraduate Student Fellowships to study Burmese, Filipino, Indonesian, Javanese, Khmer, Thai or Vietnamese at the intermediate level (2nd year) or above. 

 Questions should be directed to SEAP Associate Director, Thamora Fishel (tfishel@cornell.edu) or call 607-255-8902.