Baylor Student Receives U.S. Department of State Critical Language Scholarship

June 14, 2017
Emily Martin CL Scholarship

Baylor University senior Emily E. Martin will spend this summer studying Russian in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, as the result of a Critical Language Scholarship from the U.S. Department of State. (Robert Rogers/Marketing & Communications)

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WACO, Texas (June 14, 2017) – Emily E. Martin, a senior University Scholar at Baylor University, has been awarded a U.S. Department of State Critical Language Scholarship to study Russian this summer in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia.

The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) 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.

Martin is one of approximately 550 competitively selected American undergraduate and graduate students at U.S. colleges and universities who received a CLS award in 2017. In April, she also received another prestigious international scholarship, a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship (ETA), which will allow her to spend the 2017-2018 academic year teaching English in Germany. She is the seventh Baylor student since 2007 to receive a CL scholarship.

“Emily has been an outstanding student in the Russian language program at Baylor,” said Michael Long, Ph.D., professor of Russian and division director of Asian and African languages in the department of modern languages and cultures. “The CLS program is nationally competitive and highly prestigious. The Russian language faculty at Baylor are extremely proud of Emily’s achievement and are certain that she will make the most of her experience in Russia.”

Over the summer, recipients spend eight to 10 weeks overseas studying one of 14 critical languages, which are essential for America’s engagement with the world: Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Swahili, Turkish or Urdu. The program includes intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences designed to promote rapid language gains. CLS scholars are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship and apply their critical language skills in their future careers.

CLS also plays an important role in preparing U.S. students for the 21st century’s globalized workforce, increasing American competitiveness and contributing to national security. CLS scholars serve as citizen ambassadors, representing the diversity of the United States abroad and building lasting relationships with people in their host countries.

CLS scholars are among the more than 50,000 academic and professional exchange program participants supported annually by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. These exchange programs build respect and positive relations between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The CLS program is administered by American Councils for International Education.


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 16,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.