Ball State University freshman Scott Webster has been awarded a Critical Language Scholarship (CLS), which will provide two months of beginning Turkish study in Ankara, Turkey, this Summer.  

Mr. Webster, of Fishers, Ind., is a student in Ball State’s Honors College majoring in Economics and Finance, with a minor in Accounting. His language study and cultural immersion in Turkey with CLS will be the first step toward his goal of becoming fluent in Turkish. Ultimately, Mr. Webster intends to pursue a career with the U.S. State Department or other government agency. 

“I am grateful to the U.S. Department of State and the American Councils for International Education for selecting me to receive this prestigious scholarship,” Mr. Webster said. “By building Turkish language skills, I can be of service in a crucial region that affects national interests of the U.S. The ability to converse and read in Turkish will enable me to have greater access to, and understanding of, Turkey’s political, social, and economic issues.” 

Mr. Webster is the eighth Ball State awardee of a Critical Language Scholarship. He is scheduled to begin his studies at the TÖMER Institute in Ankara in mid-June. 

An initiative within the U.S. State Department, CLS is an intensive overseas language and cultural immersion program for American students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities. Critical Language Scholars spend eight to 10 weeks abroad studying one of 15 critical languages, with intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences designed to promote rapid language gains. 

This scholarship program is part of a broader U.S. government effort to significantly boost the number of Americans studying and mastering foreign languages that are crucial to national security and economic prosperity. More than 4,500 undergraduate and graduate students nationwide applied for the scholarship this year.