This page is a section-by-section overview of the application for the undergraduate Boren Scholarships. Program design and strong essays are critical to a successful application, so be sure to review the sections on Selecting an Eligible Study Abroad Program and writing the Essays.
Applicants should notify their Boren Awards campus representative as early as possible in the application process. They have a wealth of experience advising applicants and assist in crafting a strong application. They may also have set on-campus deadlines -- please respect these, as they have been set to provide you with feedback ahead of the national deadline.
Applicants not supported by a campus representative may still apply without penalty. Contact the Boren Awards team at 1-800-618-NSEP (6737) or firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions not answered on this website.
Application System Tips
- The Boren Scholarships application includes twelve sections, as well as a section at the end to review and submit the application.
- To view the entire application in order, click "continue" through the buttons at the bottom of each page.
- You may only use the left navigation to skip from section to section once you have saved at least one field in a particular section. The application saves automatically. You can always change your response later, as long as you have not submitted your application.
You must respond to all of these questions in order to proceed with the application.
- U.S. Citizenship - Only U.S. citizens are eligible for the scholarship.
- I will be a matriculated undergraduate student at a U.S. college or university as of the Boren Scholarships application deadline – Only matriculated students are eligible.
- Current Institution as of Application Deadline – Choose your current U.S. institution. Should that change before the application deadline, you may change it later.
- Proposed Country of Study – Choose a country of study at this time. You may return to change it later.
- Are you a citizen of this country? - Boren recipients may not study overseas in a country in which they are a citizen.
- Proposed Language – Choose your language of study at this time. You may return to change it later.
- Name – Enter your complete and legal name. You may include a preferred first name and former last name if applicable.
- Mailing Address – Enter your complete current address and phone number.
- Permanent Address – Enter the address and phone number where you can be reached when you are not at college.
- Email Address – Enter the email where you would like Boren to contact you.
- Telephone Number – The country code for the United States is +1, so a U.S. number would be entered +1-202-555-1234.
- Biographical Information – Enter your Sex, Birthdate, and Country of Residence.
- Additional Information – Enter the state and Congressional district where you are registered to vote. Visit www.house.gov to look up your Congressional district if you do not know. Choose yes or no on the question asking whether you are a veteran or in active service to the U.S. military.
- Voluntary Information – The question on race/ethnic origin is optional. IF you choose not to answer, you can select "Prefer Not To Say." Choosing this option will not affect your application.
- On this page, your current institution of higher education and your level of study should already be listed from the Eligibility Determination page.
- Enter the academic level (Undergraduate or Graduate), degree type, major (+ double major and minor if applicable), GPA, and the maximum possible GPA at your institution, the institution's location, as well as the date attended from, and date attended to/graduation date. Note: the “Date/Expected Date Attended to” field for your current institution should be after the completion of your Boren-funded program.
- You may list up to two additional institutions where you pursued or obtained a previous degree.
- You must include a valid transcript from your current institution and from any institution where you received credit. If transfer credit is listed on your current transcript, you do not need to request an additional transcript.
- Unofficial transcripts are acceptable, but they MUST include your name, the name of the institution, titles of the courses, and the grades obtained in each.
- You must submit the transcript for your current institution in order to submit your application.
- You may submit the transcripts from other institutions after you submit your application but they MUST be received BEFORE the national application deadline.
- Relevant Employment History – You may list up to three current or former jobs relevant to your Boren-funded overseas study or your post-Boren career. In 50 to 100 words, use the Position Title and Summary of Responsibilities box to highlight the elements of the position that are most relevant to future study or career plans.
- Relevant Activities – You may list up to three extracurricular activities relevant to your Boren-funded overseas study or your post-Boren career. In 50 to 100 words, use the Description and Significance of Activity box to highlight the elements of the activity that are most relevant to future study or career plans.
Study Abroad Program
- Your Study Abroad Country and Proposed Language will be auto-populated from the Eligibility and Basic Information page. You must return to that page if you wish to change either.
- Study Abroad Program Sponsor – Choose the program sponsor from the dropdown menu. If your sponsor is not listed, email email@example.com with a link to the website of the program.
- Study Abroad Program Name – Most study abroad programs have a specific title. Enter it here. If there is not a name, simply re-enter the name of the sponsor.
- Proposed Overseas Institution – Choose the overseas institution location of your study abroad program. If yours is not listed, just enter the most accurate name for the overseas host.
- Study Abroad Program Description – Upload a description of the study abroad program. You may create a screenshot or PDF from the program’s website, or scan a program brochure. If you have more than one program, upload all descriptions here. Please limit this upload to no more than 5 pages.
- Are you planning on participating in separate study abroad programs? – If the program sponsor and overseas institution are the same each term, answer no. If either differs, answer yes. You are expected to remain in the same country for the full program.
- The application will calculate the length of your overseas program based on the overseas program dates you indicated above and show the maximum award amount for which you are eligible.
- Note that most of the instructions for this section are on the application itself. Note also that there is no incentive for you to underestimate your costs – the amount you estimate will not affect your chances of winning a Boren Scholarship.
- Tuition and Fees – Includes cost of tuition required to maintain matriculation at home institution.
- Room and Board – Includes room and board during program breaks spent in country.
- Visa and Visa Related Travel - Visa and necessary overseas visa-related travel (e.g. renewals for long-term visas).
- Airfare – All Boren Scholarships recipients must comply with the Fly America Act, which requires that all travel supported by federal government funds be on a U.S.-flag carrier departing from the United States to the foreign destination and returning to the United States. This includes code-share tickets on foreign carriers if they are purchased through and issued by the U.S. carrier. The only circumstance in which an award recipient can use a foreign-flag carrier is when an origin or interchange point is not served by a U.S.-flag carrier. An award recipient can use the foreign-flag carrier to the nearest interchange to connect with a U.S. carrier. All Scholarship recipients will be required to send a photocopy of the passenger receipt page(s) to their airline tickets to show compliance with the Fly America Act. Boren Scholars who are funding their airfare through other means do not need to comply with the Fly America Act.
- Other Costs – Should include cost of books, local transportation, and insurance for time spent overseas.
- Financial Aid – This should only include the cost of financial aid that will be applied to program that your Boren Scholarship would fund. Please only include aid that you are certain you will be receiving. This will be deducted from your total amount required.
Alternate Study Abroad Program
- Alternate study abroad programs are optional (with a few exceptions, see below) and must be for the same language in a different country from the initially proposed Boren program.
- An alternate study abroad program is REQUIRED if you have chosen a country with an asterisk or a language with an asterisk (Arabic, Mandarin & Russian).
- See list of preferred Boren Countries
- The application includes two essays, with a maximum of 800 words for each essay. Review the extensive essay guidelines to increase your chances of success.
- Language Plans - You should describe your plans for continuing to study and/or speak the language following the Boren Fellowship
- Career Plans - Briefly summarize your plans to fulfill federal service and how it relates to your proposed Boren plans. You should also discuss your post-Boren career plans in detail in your second essay.
- Native Language – Choose your native language.
- Boren Language – This will auto-populate from the Eligibility and Basic Information page.
- Numbers of years studied or spoken – Enter the number of years you have studied or spoken the Boren language.
- Language Self-Evaluation – Rate your abilities in listening, reading, speaking, and writing the Boren language. See the language self-assessment guide for an explanation of the scoring system.
- You may add the same information for up to four additional languages you have studied or spoken.
- Overseas Experience – List up to three non-U.S. countries where you have lived, traveled, or studied. List the three most relevant to your Boren-funded overseas study or your post-Boren career. Please do not double-count time lived, traveled, or studied. You may list zero.
- Honors and Awards – List up to five relevant honors or awards. You may list zero
- Other Scholarships or Fellowships (optional) – List up to five additional scholarships for which you have applied that will cover the 2021-2022 academic year. The answer to this question does not impact your Boren application review.
- ROTC Information - indicate any participation in ROTC. If you are an ROTC cadet or midshipman, it is important that you note that on your application so that it may be assigned to a special selection panel.
- Additional Information – Please let us know about how you learned about Boren.
- DLNSEO Programs - Indicate whether you’ve participated any other NSEP-funded programs.
- Additional Information – Indicate whether you’ve participated any other NSEP-funded programs.
- The Boren Scholarship application requires two Letters of Recommendation, and applicants may include a third.
- Applicants are also encouraged to include a Language Evaluation of the Boren language, which should be filled out by a recent instructor in that language.
- Review our guide on selecting strong recommenders.
- Click “Add Recommender” to enter information on each recommender and select the type of recommender (Letter of Recommendation or Language Evaluation).
- If you are not ready to notify your recommender, you may select “Save” and come back to the page when you are ready.
- Once you are ready to notify your recommender, select “Send to Recommender”.
- If a recommender is no longer able to submit a letter for you, or you entered their information incorrectly, you may click the “Exclude” button on their entry. Doing this will allow you enter a new recommender in their place.
- If you wish to reinstate a recommender after clicking “Exclude”, you may click the “Reinstate” button on their entry.
- If your recommender has lost track of the link to submit a recommendation, you may click the “Send Reminder” button on their entry.
- Please note that the recommendation letter will not be visible to you -- you will only be able to see whether or not it has been submitted.
- Please read and agree to the statement by clicking the box. In order to actually submit the application, you must agree to this statement. Please note that this does not submit your application. First, you will be asked to complete references, review your application, and click the final submit button.
- This section allows you to see what fields are missing, blank, or not filled out correctly. If any required fields are missing, there will be a link to take you the part of the application to fix the information.
- If you see the warning: "We have detected the following errors with your application. These errors must be corrected before submission.": you must fix these errors before you will be allowed to submit your application.
- If you see the warning: "We have detected the following problems with your application": the application has detected potential issue with your application, but you MAY still submit your application.
- If you are experiencing errors that you are not able to resolve, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org. We appreciate detailed explanations and/or screenshots of the issue.
- When your application is complete, click on “Submit Application”.
- If you submit your application in error and would like to have it made editable again, please contact us email@example.com .