July 27, 2021

Susquehanna University’s Hannah Kelly-Quigley ’20 has been awarded a U.S. Department of State Critical Language Scholarship to study Chinese during the summer of 2021.

Kelly-Quigley, who graduated from Susquehanna with a double major in neuroscience and psychology and a minor in Asian studies, is one of nearly 700 competitively selected American students at U.S. colleges and universities who received a CLS award in 2021.

This is Kelly-Quigley’s second Critical Language Scholarship. Her first, in 2018, also sent her to China.

“I reapplied to this program because following my 2018 CLS experience, persistence, and good guidance, I was certain that participating in CLS was one of the best ways I could improve my Mandarin skills,” Kelly-Quigley said. “When previously studying abroad in Xi’an, the comprehensive coursework and immersive environment was an invaluable experience.”

The U.S. Department of State’s Critical Language Scholarship Program is part of a U.S. government effort to expand the number of Americans studying and mastering critical foreign languages. CLS scholars gain critical language and cultural skills that enable them to contribute to U.S. economic competitiveness and national security.

“Language study is critical to understanding the history and culture of our global community,” said Karol Weaver, professor of history and faculty coordinator for fellowship advising. “We are happy that Hannah has secured this prestigious scholarship to further her studies in this important field.”

The CLS Program provides opportunities to U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to spend eight to 10 weeks studying one of 15 critical languages: Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Portuguese, Punjabi, Russian, Swahili, Turkish, or Urdu. The program includes intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences designed to promote rapid language gains. The CLS Program is developed in partnership with local institutions in countries where these languages are commonly spoken. CLS scholars are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship and apply their critical language skills in their future careers.

Due to the global pandemic, the majority of CLS institutes in 2021 will be offered as a virtual program.