Study abroad: Russian Overseas Flagship (American Councils for International Education)

Deadline for application: January 10, 2018

American Councils for International Education would like to announce the opening of the application for the 2018-2019 Russian Overseas Flagship Program. The online application deadline, including three reference forms, is January 10, 2018.

The Russian Overseas Flagship Program was established in 2004 to address the critical need for U.S. professionals able to speak, read, understand, and write in Russian at the highest levels of functional proficiency. The program is open to advanced-level learners of Russian who are committed to attaining “professional” or “distinguished-level” language proficiency (ILR 3, 3+, 4/ACTFL “Superior” or “Distinguished” levels) through an intensive nine-month language training program tailored to their professional interests and academic specialization.

The Russian Overseas Flagship Program prepares U.S. students to be able to communicate in Russian at the highest levels of functional proficiency. The program is located at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University in Almaty, Kazakhstan. The academic program is structured around an integrated curriculum featuring classes in contemporary mass media, language and culture, expository writing, and advanced oral communication. Students are offered twenty hours per week of intensive language training and tutoring as well as content courses in any major at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (during fall semester), professional internships with local companies and organizations (during spring semester), and guided excursions.  Optional Kazakh language and culture classes are available to interested students. A U.S. resident director and several local administrative staff provide 24/7 onsite logistical support to students.  Participants receive academic credit through Bryn Mawr College. All participants live with Russian-speaking host families, where they can become fully immersed in Russian and Kazakhstani daily life.

Eligible applicants are encouraged to apply for Boren Awards (, which may be used to support participation on the Russian Overseas Flagship Program. American Councils cannot offer financial support for any participants.

At-large applicants (i.e., those who are not enrolled in the Russian Domestic Flagship programs) must satisfy the following requirements:
–       Have a Bachelor’s, or higher, degree before the beginning of the program in August 2018,
–       Demonstrate  ILR Level 2 or higher Russian in oral proficiency and at least one other skill (reading, listening, writing), with the remaining skills no less than ILR 1+ on the online Russian Overseas Flagship Qualifying Exam, and
–       Have at least six weeks of prior academic experience studying Russian in Russia or a Russian-speaking country.

Interested at-large applicants should contact Flagship Program Officer Derek Groom ( no later than December 15, 2017 to request an online application account. Completed online applications, including all supporting documents, such as transcripts, must be received by American Councils by January 10, 2018, 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The deadline for recommenders to submit their online forms is also January 10, 2018 by 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.

To read more about the program, please go to