Please note that the content below applies to the 2019 application year. Some program information may change ahead of the next application deadlines in January/February 2020.
Boren Scholarships, an initiative of the National Security Education Program, provide unique funding opportunities for U.S. undergraduate students to study less commonly taught languages in world regions critical to U.S. interests, and underrepresented in study abroad, including Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East. The countries of Western Europe, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand are excluded.
Boren Scholars represent a vital pool of highly motivated individuals who wish to work in the federal national security arena. In exchange for funding, Boren Scholars commit to working in the federal government for at least one year after graduation.
Maximum scholarship awards are:
- 8-12 weeks: up to $8,000 for a summer program (special initiative for STEM students only)
- 12-24 weeks: up to $10,000
- 25-52 weeks: up to $20,000 (most preferred)
Length of Study
Boren Scholarships promote long term linguistic and cultural immersion, and therefore study abroad proposals for two or more semesters are strongly encouraged. Preference will be given to undergraduate applicants proposing at least 25 weeks overseas. Boren-funded programs can begin no earlier than June 1 of the application year. Summer-only programs must be eight (8) weeks or more and are limited to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) students.
The program focuses on geographic areas, languages, and fields of study deemed critical to U.S. national security.
It draws on a broad definition of national security, recognizing that the scope of national security has expanded to include not only the traditional concerns of protecting and promoting American well-being, but also the challenges of global society, including: sustainable development, environmental degradation, global disease and hunger, population growth and migration, and economic competitiveness.
Boren Scholarships are awarded with preference for countries, languages, and fields of study critical to U.S. national security.
Preference is also given to students who will study abroad for longer periods of time, and who are highly motivated by the opportunity to work in the federal government. As we cannot list all countries, languages, and fields that are critical to U.S. national security, we are interested in applications that fall outside the preferences, if the candidate can make a compelling case that such study can contribute significantly to U.S. national security and the goals of the program.
For more information, please visit, what makes a competitive Boren Scholarship application.
In exchange for scholarship funding, all Boren Scholars must agree to the NSEP Service Requirement.
The Boren Scholarships national application deadline is February 7, 2019. Please see your campus representative for your earlier on-campus deadline. Please visit how to apply for more information on application process.
Boren Scholarships applicants will be notified of their status by mid-to-late April.