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I just got off a conference call with AFS about NSLI. I got some interesting info I thought you all would be interested in .
You all know the basics about NSLI - languages covered etc. Did you know that it is administered by AFS, American Councils, iEARN and some private institutions? The private institutions are not high school exchange organizations, but may be schools or other cultural programs. They will handle some of the summer programs. You can actually see what countries are handled by AFS/American Councils/iEARN on the website NSLI for Youth.
OK, on to the fun stuff.
*As of the application deadline (12/4), 1977 completed applications had been received by American Councils. This is a 38% increase over 2008.
* American Councils will do the initial eligibility screening of the applications, expected to be completed by 1/4/2010. They expect to have 1400-1500 eligible.
* AFS is handling all interviews for NSLI.
*Interviews begin 1/11/2010. They will be completed by 2/16/2010. Final screening is expected to be completed and students notified by 3/31/2010. At that point students have until 4/15/2010 to accept or decline the scholarship.
*They expect approximately 600 students to win scholarships.
*Of the 600, 225 will be with AFS. The rest will be spread among the other partner organizations.
Now, I can't guarantee that the timeline will remain the same, but AFS has just hired staff to work specifically on NSLI and I know there are trainings being held all over the US for volunteers who will be interviewing. Judging by the timeline as it stands now, though, you all who got your apps in should be getting notified about interviews sometime after 4Jan.
An interesting factoid I learned - some of the Korean program students this year are not in host families, but in boarding schools. It wasn't mentioned if this would continue in 2010...
So good luck to all of you who applied, you have about a 1 in 3 chance! Not bad odds!