Foreign Language and Areas Studies (FLAS)

Frequently Asked Questions

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Institute

University of Georgia

 

Who is eligible to apply for a FLAS fellowship?

(1) Graduate students who are US citizens or permanent residents AND who are enrolled (or accepted) in a program that combines modern foreign language training with international or area studies, or with the international aspects of professional or other fields of study.

(2) Undergraduates who are US citizens or permanent residents AND who have declared a major by the application deadline AND who will study a FLAS language at the intermediate or advanced level during the fellowship year.

How are awards made?

Awards are made on the basis of academic merit and other criteria set by each university with FLAS funds and the U.S. Department of Education.

Additionally, according U.S. Department of Education guidelines, Centers will give priority when awarding fellowships to undergraduate and graduate students who demonstrate financial need as indicated by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  To be considered under the priority category of demonstrated financial need, students must provide a digital copy of their financial award overview, as shown in Athena, by the relevant application deadline.

NOTE: we are prioritizing those with need, not excluding those without need.  In other words, all applicants will be considered for FLAS, but if you have financial need and wish to be considered under this priority category, you MUST provide your award information by the FLAS deadline.

Although graduate students don’t normally complete the FAFSA, the University requires them to do so in order to be considered under the category of financial need for FLAS fellowships.  This is to ensure that all candidates are assessed for need with uniform and fair consideration by the Office of Student Financial Aid.

May I apply for a FLAS if I am not a UGA student?

Yes, as long as you are enrolled, or accepted for enrollment, at UGA for the academic year fellowship.

Non-UGA and UGA students may apply for a summer FLAS, but the fellowships must be used with an institution that receives FLAS allocations. Many of the FLAS approved programs can be found at http://www.claspprograms.org/pages/detail/5/Language. Please contact the FLAS coordinator if you have any questions.

Is there a limit on the number of FLAS fellowships I can receive?

There is no limit on the number of FLAS awards you can receive over your academic career, but no more than one fellowship can be awarded for the same period. You will also have to re-apply to be considered for additional FLAS funding cycles.

 

Questions about the Application Process

What information is required for the application?

Please refer to the application guidelines found in the UGA Study Away portal: https://studyaway.uga.edu/index.cfm?FuseAction=programs.ViewProgram&Program_ID=13407. Note that there are separate competitions for the Academic Year FLAS and for the Summer FLAS, for which two separate and complete applications are required.  Each fellowship application requires you to fill out the forms and upload all documents to the online system. No paper applications will be accepted. In addition to entering basic information, you will need to upload: your personal statement regarding your planned use of the FLAS fellowship, your curriculum vitae or résumé, unofficial higher education transcript(s), a digital copy of your FAFSA Award Overview from Athena, and letters of recommendation (you can request them through the system). Your application is not complete until all have been submitted.

According to guidelines set by the U.S. Department of Education, Centers will give priority when awarding fellowships to undergraduate and graduate students who demonstrate financial need as indicated by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid .  To be considered under the priority category of demonstrated financial need, students must provide a digital copy of their financial award information, as shown in Athena, by the relevant application deadline in order to determine their level of need.  Please read the full statement of financial need above in the section on “Questions about Eligibility”.

Can I apply to more than one National Resource Center?

Yes. You can submit applications to more than one Center, but you will not be allowed to receive two simultaneous awards.

Can I apply to both summer and academic year FLAS fellowships?

Yes. It is possible to receive both a summer and AY award in the same year. These are separate competitions, and you must apply separately and completely for the Summer and AY FLAS fellowships.

How are the competitions for the FLAS awards decided?

Each Center has a review and selection committee that evaluates and ranks its applicants. Undergraduate and graduate student applications for the Academic Year FLAS are ranked separately and not in competition with each other. The Summer FLAS competition draws from both undergraduate and graduate students in the same pool.  In addition, financial need is considered, according to new guidelines set by the US Department of Education. Please read the full statement regarding financial need in the eligibility section above under “How are awards made?”.

 

Questions About FLAS Usage

(Also see below for specific answers about Academic Year and Summer awards)

Is a FLAS fellow allowed to work during the award period?

FLAS fellows are required to be engaged in full-time foreign language and area or international studies course work during the academic year, or in intensive language study during the summer award period. Students are permitted to undertake additional work, however, with permission from their departments, where required.

Can I take a semester off and finish the award during a subsequent period, or delay acceptance of the FLAS Fellowship for the academic year or summer?

No. FLAS Fellowships must be completed during the year for which they are awarded.

Can I request a Pass/Fail grade for my FLAS-qualifying area studies or language course?

No. FLAS-qualifying courses must be graded.

Beyond coursework, is anything required of FLAS Fellows?

All FLAS Fellows are required to make pre- and post-award reports online to the U.S. Department of Education and will be surveyed every two years following their award for up to eight years. In addition, all FLAS Fellows must take pre- and post-award language proficiency assessments and participate in other assessments including surveys and reports.

 

About Academic Year (AY) awards:

What does an AY FLAS Fellow receive?

Graduate students receive up to $18,000 toward tuition and fees. Undergraduates receive up to $10,000 toward tuition and fees. A stipend is also provided: $15,000 for graduate students and $5,000 for undergraduates.

What is the AY FLAS used for?

Academic Year FLAS Fellowships are awarded to students engaged in:

(1) Formal, full-time modern language and area studies coursework at UGA, including the international aspects of professional or other fields of study.

(2) Formal, full-time modern language and area studies coursework, including the international aspects of professional or other fields of study, as part of an approved official undergraduate overseas program.

Do I have to take specific classes?

AY FLAS Fellows must take at least one language course and one area studies course focused on that region each semester of the FLAS year.

Can I receive an Academic Year FLAS for a single semester?

No. AY FLAS Fellowships are awarded for the entire academic year only.

I am an undergraduate student and have the HOPE, Zell, and/or Pell scholarships. How will the fellowship affect my scholarships?

If you have Hope, Zell, and/or Pell, the FLAS fellowship would cover the remaining amount of tuition AFTER those scholarships are applied to your bill for the semester, up to $10,000 for the academic year. In addition, the FLAS Fellowship covers all fees.

I am an undergraduate student currently receiving financial aid.  If I am awarded an AY FLAS, how will it affect my aid package?

We recommend that you speak with UGA’s Office of Student Financial Aid to discuss how a FLAS fellowship would affect your aid package.

I am a graduate student currently receiving a fellowship/ assistantship.  If I am awarded an AY FLAS, how will it affect my fellowship/assistantship?

You are allowed to hold a fellowship/assistantship concurrently with the FLAS fellowship, as long as the other fellowship/assistantship is not paid with other federal monies. FLAS will pay any tuition and fees not covered by your existing fellowship/assistantship, up to $18,000. You will receive the $15,000 FLAS stipend in addition to your existing stipend.

Different UGA schools and departments may have different policies for students with outside funding that supersede this policy.  We recommend that you speak with your dean or director of graduate studies to see how the FLAS fellowship would affect your fellowship/assistantship package.

 

About Summer awards:

What does a Summer FLAS Fellow receive?

Graduate and undergraduate students receive $5,000 toward tuition and fees plus a $2,500 stipend.

What is the Summer FLAS used for?

Summer FLAS fellowships are intended to help students gain the equivalent of a year’s worth of college-level language study. They support students enrolled in:

  • Formal domestic programs of intensive language study at the beginning (graduate students only), intermediate or advanced level;
  • Formal overseas programs of intensive language study at the intermediate or advanced level; or
  • Formal overseas programs of intensive study at the beginning level of languages for which appropriate equivalent instruction is not available in the United States (graduate students only).

To be considered “intensive,” a language program must offer a minimum of 140 contact (class-time) hours (120 for advanced level) and must last a minimum of 6 weeks. LACSI will not intervene with overseas programs to alter the duration of study on behalf of individual fellows.

Can a Summer FLAS award be used to participate in an internship program?

No. The Summer FLAS is intended to support study in an intensive summer language program only.

Can I receive a Summer FLAS if I will graduate in the previous spring?

No. Only currently enrolled students can receive a Summer FLAS. You may postpone graduation if you decide to participate in a Summer FLAS; however, that decision should be made talking with your advisor.

Does a Summer FLAS include a travel award?

The Summer FLAS does not pay for travel to the study site. Occasionally, however, LACSI may offer partial reimbursement of Summer FLAS travel up to $1,000, but ONLY if funds are available and the flight is taken on a U.S airline. Contact the FLAS coordinator for more information.