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Critical Languages Scholarship Award Winner Alessandra Testa

Dear Colleagues,

It is with great pleasure that I announce that TCNJ junior Alessandra Testa, International Studies Major and Arabic Minor, has been selected for the 2016 Critical Languages Scholarship (CLS) Award for study in Ibri, Oman. Congratulations to Alessandra and her mentor Prof. Nelly Taha of the World Languages and Cultures Department.

Alessandra states that she “decided to apply for CLS because I think I have a responsibility as an American citizen to promote understanding between Americans and people from the Arab world, and I need exposure to the Arab world in order to confront stereotypes about it here in America and also challenge stereotypes people have of America in the Arab world. I worked in Morocco two summers ago and the questions people asked me when I came back were based not in fear or disgust, but in ignorance coupled with a desire to learn more. I also have an academic interest in the Arabic-speaking Diaspora, especially encounters between immigrants from the Global South and Europe.”

The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program is a competitive scholarship award that provides fully funded summer overseas language and cultural immersion program for American undergraduate and graduate students. With the goal of broadening the base of Americans studying and mastering critical languages and building relationships between the people of the United States and other countries, CLS provides opportunities to a diverse range of students from across the United States at every level of language learning. The CLS Program is a program of the U.S. Department of State.

Marla Jaksch
Coordinator, Competitive Post-Graduate Fellowships