Grants for the Study of East and Southeast Asian Languages

Since 1990, the Blakemore Foundation, with the support of The Freeman Foundation, has awarded over $18 million in grants to graduating seniors, college graduates, graduate students and working professionals for an academic year abroad in full-time intensive Asian language study. The fellowships cover tuition and a stipend for related educational expenses, basic living costs and transportation. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the United States.

Superior candidates pursuing careers in fields such as academia, international business, accounting, law, medicine, STEM (science, technology, engineering, math), journalism, architecture, teaching, social or NGO work, and government service are encouraged to apply.

Photos sent to us by recent Fellows from our Instagram page.

Language Grant Applications for 2021/2022 Academic Year

Applications are available July 1, 2020 thru December 30, 2020.

Please review the eligibility requirements and grant guidelines under the Language Grants tab on this website before applying.
Apply on line at

To securely access the application site users must use a modern browser version that supports TLS version 1.2 or above. The minimum browser versions include browsers such as Internet Explorer 11, Mozilla Firefox 27, Google Chrome 30 or Apple Safari 7 or later. However, we recommend you update your browser to the latest version available before starting an application.

If you are unable to log on or access our application site, or have problems using the application program, please email us at so we can assist you. If you are applying from abroad, you may need to use a VPN or submit a paper application.

Our FAQ page has answers to many common questions. You may also contact the Foundation by phone at (206) 427-4838 or email.

Language Grants

Blakemore Freeman Fellowships fund an academic year of advanced language study abroad of Chinese, Japanese, Korean and selected Southeast Asian languages.

An applicant must have received by the start of the grant a bachelor's degree and have completed (at minimum) the third year of language classes at the college level, either through classes taken in university or in combination with study-abroad language programs.

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Testimonials from our Grantees

The IUP program and this fellowship really made a dream of mine come true. My speaking, listening, and even thinking in Chinese have all improved to a level that I never imagined that I could achieve. I even find myself easily working between English and Chinese without much effort. IUP also humbled me a great deal. It taught me about the vast amount of knowledge I currently lack and how much I still need to improve. It taught me to be more confident in myself in and outside the classroom. IUP has also taught me far more about myself than I initially imagined a language program could. It not only improved my language ability, it also taught me how to approach language to maximize efficiency and to be a more confident individual. For that, I am forever grateful for the teachers and instruction that I received at IUP.

Reading college level texts in Japanese was something I never thought I could do just one year ago!

While hanging out with my friends in Tokyo, I brought along some reading that was due the next day. When one of them asked to see it, they were quite surprised that we were reading something so difficult. I am definitely very happy that I got a chance to come to the IUC in Yokohama this year.

My Blakemore Freeman Fellowship provided me with the tools I need to survive as a business leader in China.

Currently, I’m working as the leader of a division marketing team for the Chinese subsidiary of a Fortune 500 company. As the only non-Chinese member of its China business team I am completely immersed in Chinese language and culture on a daily basis.

I studied Chinese as an undergrad with grand ambitions to master the language and work as a lawyer in China, but there had never been an opportunity after graduating to move from that basic linguistic foundation to a professional level.

The Blakemore Freeman Fellowship was the essential ingredient in allowing me to take time off from my career and really focus on the language. Coming out of the program, I was able to function as a working lawyer in China, both in terms of working with documents and negotiating with counter-parties. But for the Blakemore Freeman Fellowship, none of it would have been possible.

The Blakemore Freeman Fellowship gave me the launching pad to pursue my entrepreneurial ambitions in Asia and launch my first company: an import/export business between Taiwan and Singapore.

Without the grant, I would never have been able to work with Taiwanese suppliers and build such strong professional networks in China, Hong Kong and Singapore.