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Programs : Brochure

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  • Program Terms: Boren Academic Year, Boren Fall, Boren Spring, Boren Summer
  • Restrictions: KU applicants only
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Fact Sheet:
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Study Abroad Program Coordinator: Jenna Hunter-Skidmore Open to Non-KU students: No
Open to graduate students: No
Program Description:
Boren Scholarships (www.borenawards.org) provide up to $20,000 to U.S. undergraduate students to study abroad in areas of the world that are critical to U.S. interests and underrepresented in study abroad, including Africa, Asia, Central & Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East. The countries of Western Europe, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand are excluded. For a complete list of countries, click here.  Boren Scholarships are funded by the National Security Education Program (NSEP), which focuses on geographic areas, languages, and fields of study deemed critical to US national security.

NOTE: Graduate students applying for the Boren Fellowship have no KU campus deadline, but are encouraged to contact Sue Lorenz in the Office of International Programs in 300 Strong Hall for more information on this process.

Are you eligible?

To be eligible for the undergraduate scholarship award, students must be U.S. citizens, degree-seeking students at a U.S. post-secondary institution, planning to apply to engage in a study abroad experience in a country NOT in Western Europe, Canada, Australia, or New Zealand, and planning to use the scholarship for a study abroad program that will end before graduation.

Strong Boren candidates come from a variety of academic backgrounds, but all are interested in studying less commonly taught languages, including but not limited to, Arabic, Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Swahili. Additionally, applicants should be able to identify how their study abroad program, as well as their future academic and career goals, will contribute to US national security.  NSEP 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.  Therefore, students with majors or interests in any of these areas would be considered strong candidates.

Duration 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 a full-year academic study. Boren-funded programs can begin no earlier than June 1.

Work Service Requirement

There is a work service requirement for Boren Scholarship recipients. Therefore, students interested in the program should have an interest in working for the federal government in the Department of State, Department of Defense, or Department of Homeland Security or within any of the other agencies that comprise the US Intelligence Community. Recipients are required to find a job no later than three years after the date of graduation, and the duration of the Service Requirement is one year or the duration of assistance provided under the program, whichever is longer.

Students who receive the Boren Scholarship enjoy several advantages as they seek Federal employment. NSEP employs staff that is available to assist Scholars in their job search efforts by conducting active outreach, holding job consultations and providing letters of certification for award recipients. This NSEP Service Team begins working with awardees even before graduation. NSEP has also developed an interactive website, NSEPNet, to help Scholars simplify and organize their job search efforts. The NSEPnet site maintains an online collection of Federal job search tips, exclusive job opportunities and job announcements, and a resume database for award recipients to post their credentials. These resumes are made available to hiring officials in all Federal departments and agencies where relevant employment opportunities exist, and hiring officials perform searches of Boren award recipients’ resumes for specific types of expertise. Additionally, all Boren Scholarship recipients become members of the Boren Forum, which offers numerous resources to inform and connect the NSEP alumni network, including message boards, member events, job fairs, and various other resources to facilitate member connections, networking, and professional development.

How to Apply

Choosing a program and a country for study abroad is the first step in the Boren application process. To find a program, you would probably want to go through the KU Office of Study Abroad the way most students do; by first meeting with a Peer Advisor to look over options (KU & non-KU) and then meeting with a Program Coordinator to narrow down your search to one or two programs.

Once you've worked with a program coordinator and chosen a two or more programs that fit your goals and objectives, then you should schedule an appointment to meet with the KU Boren Campus Representative for the Undergraduate Scholarship, Justine Hamilton, who is also a Program Coordinator in the KU Office of Study Abroad, and begin your application through KU.

You can download a KU Boren Application Handbook to guide you through the application process here: https://documents.ku.edu/ORGS/University/Office_of_Study_Abroad/Coordinator/Justine/Boren.

Boren Scholarship Application Timeline

December 1 – Deadline for Essays to the KU Office of Study Abroad
Fall Finals Week – KU Campus Review Process Interviews
Early February – Boren deadline for applications online and for supplemental materials
Early May – Boren award decisions announced

Late Applications

If a student is interested in applying after the December campus deadline, they should contact the Boren Campus Representative IMMEDIATELY.  Late applicants are not guaranteed an on-campus review process, and the Boren Campus Representative will have no time to review any essay drafts.

For more information, visit www.borenawards.org.




This program is currently not accepting applications.