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Eliza Corpuz Chosen as Alumni Ambassador for U.S. State Department Critical Language Scholarship Program

October 10, 2022

Several years ago, while taking Chinese language courses at Pasadena City College, Eliza won a Critical Language Scholarship from the U. S. Department of State to take part in a program to expand the number of Americans mastering foreign languages critical to our national security and economic prosperity.  She has now been chosen to be an Alumni Ambassador for the program and is the principal advisor for CSU Northridge.  She will be representing us at the upcoming HACU conference in San Diego.

The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) is a U.S. Department of State program administered by American Councils for International Education. The program began in 2006 as part of a wider government initiative to expand the number of Americans studying and mastering foreign languages that are critical to national security and economic prosperity. CLS plays an important role in preparing students for the 21st century's globalized workforce and increasing national competitiveness. 

The main mode of instruction is that of an intensive, group-based, overseas language and cultural immersion program for American students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities. The fully funded program (except for passports) sends students abroad to spend eight to ten weeks studying one of 15 congressionally designated critical languages, learning one academic year of material. (For pandemic years 2020 and 2021, instruction was virtual but no less intense – for summer 2022 most of the students were able to return to in-person study abroad.) 

The CLS Program seeks participants with diverse interests, and from a wide range of fields of study and career paths, with the purpose of representing the full diversity of the United States. With a program acceptance rate between 10-11%, participants are selected based on their commitment to language learning and plans to apply their language skills to their future academic or professional pursuits.