Daniel Hodge, a senior marine biology major at the College of Charleston, has been awarded a U.S. Department of State Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) to study Chinese for two months in Shanghai during the summer of 2012. More than 5,200 students applied for the award, which places CLS among some of the most competitive scholarship competitions in the United States.
“I am hoping this experience will help me to combine my marine biology major with the Chinese language,” Hodge says. “The recent marine activity in the East China Sea may open up opportunities to use both.”
The CLS Program provides fully-funded, group-based intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences. CLS Program participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship and apply their critical language skills in their future professional careers.
“I think the full immersion will be my favorite part of the program,” Hodge says. “While there, we are not allowed to speak English and will be living with native speakers. I hope to have the opportunity to travel as much as I can while in China.”
At the College of Charleston, Hodge is involved with the Aikido Club (serving as vice president), the Biology Club (serving as treasurer), and the Anime Association. He has also served as captain of an intramural soccer team and as a DJ for CofC Radio.
The CLS Program is part of a U.S. government effort to expand dramatically the number of Americans studying and mastering critical foreign languages. Scholarship recipients for the 2012 CLS Program hail from all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia and represent 239 institutions of higher education from across the United States, including public and private universities, liberal arts colleges, minority-serving institutions and community colleges.
During CLS Program outreach activities, particular attention is paid to states/regions of the U.S. that have been historically under-represented in the CLS applicant pool and to students from diverse backgrounds and academic majors.
More information about the CLS Program or other exchange programs offered by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. http://www.clscholarship.org