Boren Scholarship

Who Can Apply:

Graduate and undergraduate students who wish to work in the government (in some capacity) and who are interested in a foreign language.  A Candidate must be a U.S. citizen at the time of application.  Candidates must also be either enrolled in or applying to a graduate program at an accredited college or university within the United States.  Boren Fellows must remain enrolled in their graduate program for the entire duration of the fellowship. Language proficiency in the language of the country you choose to study in is required.

If you are offered and accept a Boren Scholarship, you must work for the government when you graduate.  The duration of this government service will be the length of assistance provided by the fellowship and in no cases shorter than a year. You have two years from the time your studies end (graduate or terminated) to complete this requirement.

Award Amount:

Fellowships provide support for overseas, domestic study, or combination of both. The maximum level of support for a combined overseas and domestic program is $30,000.  A maximum of $12,000 per semester for up to two semesters ($24,000) is available for overseas study.  A maximum of $12,000 is available for a program of domestic study only.  Support for domestic study is limited to language or area studies that enhance a degree program and is not intended to support the general tuition costs of obtaining a degree.

Additional Awards:

Boren Scholarships is collaborating with the National Bureau for Asian Research (NBR) to sponsor an additional Bridge award to one’s Boren Fellowship.  Up to ten Boren Fellows will be placed at the NBR to work as research associates with staff in the NBR offices in Seattle, Washington or Washington D.C. Bridge awards will be awarded to Boren Fellows studying in Eurasia, South Asia, East Asia, and Southeast Asia.


Boren Scholarships and Fellowships provide a unique opportunity for U.S. students to study world regions critical to U.S. interests.  These scholarships were created to help support students who are going to study and aid U.S. government and build relationships with countries of critical importance and interest.  Such countries include the countries of Africa, Asia, Central and Eat Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Middle East.  Applicants design their own programs and may combine domestic language and cultural study with overseas study.

How to Apply:

1. You must be nominated by your area’s faculty representative.  Four-year institutions are eligible to nominate up to four students who are in the sophomore or junior class during the school year.  Contact your representative to see if you may be considered for this nomination. Your representative will also be able to give you more information about the nomination process.

2. Once you are nominated by your faculty representative, you may begin the application process.  Before completing the application you must read the application instructions.  See the online application.

  • You will be required to write two statements of purpose.
  • You will also be required to estimate your expected budget for your program.

3. You will need at least two letters of recommendation.  Recommendations need to be obtained from:

  • An individual who can attest to your leadership potential and abilities.
  • Another individual who can attest to your commitment to a career in Public Service.
  • A final individual who can attest to your intellect and prospects for continuing Academic Success.

4. Your application will be reviewed by a panel of University faculty as well as professionals from the public and private sectors.

The National Panel will consider:

  • the strength of the applicant’s proposal in terms of the program preferences, including country and language of study, as well as the applicant’s field of study
  • the ethnic, racial, and gender diversity of the fellowship finalists

The panel is also directed to give special consideration to students from science, engineering, and business.

Access complete instructions at the official website .

If you have any other questions or if we may be of further assistance, please contact the Graduate Office. Good luck with your application process.