Eve Denton ’12 and Kelsey Rice ’10 have been awarded U.S. Department of State Critical Language Scholarships (CLS) to pursaue learning in critical needs languages this summer. Denton will study Chinese in Shanghai and Rice will study Azerbaijani in Azerbaijan.

Rice, a history major, studied abroad in Peru during her junior year. She was inducted into the Phi Alpha Theta history honors society in 2009. In 2008 she conducted research on Middle Eastern historiography with Professor of History Shoshana Keller through an Emerson Grant. She is also a member of the Hamilton College orchestra.

Denton, a Chinese major, has studied abroad in Beijing. At Hamilton she is a peer counselor for the Career Center. She is a member of Hamilton’s Mock Trial Team. Model United Nations, Young Republicans, Challah for Hunger and she writes for The Spectator.

They are among 575 U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to receive scholarships through the U.S. Department of State’s CLS Program. The program was launched in 2006 to increase opportunities for American students to study critical-need languages overseas. It is part of a wider U.S. government effort to dramatically expand the number of Americans studying and mastering critical-need languages.

U.S. students will spend seven to 10 weeks in intensive language institutes this summer in 15 countries where these languages are spoken. Recipients will also support their language acquisition through cultural immersion activities. CLS Program participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship and apply their critical language skills in their future professional careers.

The 2010 CLS Program received nearly 5,300 applications. Representing all 50 states, students from a range of academic disciplines and U.S. colleges and universities were selected for scholarships in 2010 through a merit-based selection process.

CLS Program participants are among the more than 40,000 academic and professional exchange program participants supported annually by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) to promote mutual understanding and respect between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The CLS Program is administered by the Council of American Overseas Research Centers and the American Councils for International Education.

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