NSLI-Y Exchange Program for US High School Students 2018-2019 (fully-funded)

NSLI-Y Exchange Program for US High School Students 2018-2019 (fully-funded)

Deadline: November 2, 2017

Applications are invited for the National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y) Exchange Program 2018-2019. NSLI-Y is part of a U.S. government initiative that prepares American citizens to be leaders in a global world. Now more than ever, it is important that Americans have the necessary linguistic skills and cultural knowledge to promote international dialogue and support American engagement abroad. NSLI-Y aims to provide opportunities to American youth that will spark a lifetime interest in foreign languages and cultures.

Since its inception in 2006, the NSLI-Y program has experienced dramatic growth in the number of languages taught and the number of scholarships offered. From 2006 through 2008, NSLI-Y offered study abroad opportunities in only two languages: Arabic and Chinese (Mandarin).

The program’s history of growth is testimony to the broad interest American youth have in learning and using these critical world languages. NSLI-Y offers an exciting opportunity for all young people who have an interest in languages to experience language learning first-hand through immersion in other cultures.


  • Scholarships are available for students to learn the following languages: Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), Hindi, Bahasa Indonesia, Korean, Persian (Tajiki), Russian, Turkish.


  • Applicants must be U.S. citizen;
  • Have a grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 or higher on a 4.0 scale, or the equivalent;
  • Be between 15-18 years of age at start of program (birthdate between July 10, 1999 and June 10, 2003 for summer programs; birthdate between September 20, 1999 and June 30, 2003 for academic year programs);
  • Enrolled in high school (grades 9-12, including home school) at the time of application;
  • Not an immediate family member of an employee of the U.S. Department of State who works in the Youth Programs Division of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs or an employee at a NSLI-Y administering organization whose duties involve the NSLI-Y program;
  • Have not previously traveled outside the U.S. on a long-term (more than eight weeks) program sponsored by the Youth Programs Division of the Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA)
  • Previous NSLI-Y summer program participants or alumni of ECA-funded short-term programs are only eligible to apply for a NSLI-Y academic year program.


The application deadline for 2018-19 programs is November 2, 2017 at 4 PM Eastern Time.

For more information, visit NSLI-Y Exchange Program.