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The Richard U. Light Fellowship

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Photo by Dustin Nguyen, BK '20

About the Richard U. Light Fellowship

The Richard U. Light Fellowship Program was inaugurated in 1996 and provides full funding (transportation, tuition, room and board, and incidentals) for Yale students of exceptional promise to study Chinese, Japanese, or Korean at specifically approved sites in China, Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea. The Light Fellowship is fundamentally committed to intensive language study with the belief that such study abroad provides a tremendous opportunity for students to immerse themselves in new cultures. Light Fellowships are awarded twice each year and are tenable for one Yale semester, an academic year, a summer, or combinations thereof.

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  • You must be a registered and enrolled Yale student to apply.
  • All undergraduates (including graduating seniors), master's degree students, and professional school students are eligible.
  • Ph.D. students are eligible only if their language study in East Asia would be completed prior to submitting their prospectus.
  • Citizenship is not a factor in the selection.
  • Applicants must obtain admission at Light Fellowship-approved sites.
  • Recipients are expected to continue language study after they return from Asia.

Applying for the Light

The Fellowship Committee seeks to identify applicants who demonstrate academic achievement, readiness for the proposed program, and commitment to language study in their academic or career plans. Candidates must have achieved a basic proficiency (at least one year of intensive study at Yale or a comparable program by the time of departure) in the target language, but should not have achieved such a level of proficiency that they won't significantly improve by attending a program. Those who have advanced proficiency in one language may apply for the Fellowship in a second East Asian language. The Richard U. Light Fellowship Program welcomes applications from a diverse range of backgrounds and academic disciplines.

Click below to apply for the Light Fellowship:

Spring Semester Summer, Fall, and Academic Year

Quote: Living in China for two months (...) helped me develop an international perspective and become more aware of China and America’s multifaceted relationship. I will now return home with a sense of confidence in my Chinese abilities and a hunger to learn more.

Madeline Bauer (CC ’17)
Richard U. Light Fellow
Beijing, China – Summer 2014