FAQs

Eligibility

Who is eligible to apply for a CASA fellowship?
Applicants must be US citizens or permanent residents. They also must fall into one of the following categories: (a) current graduate students (e.g., PhD or MA student); (b) undergraduate students in their junior or senior year; or (c) holders of either a bachelor's or master's degree.

Non-US citizens or permanent residents are welcome to apply to CASA, and if accepted, may participate on a Pay-Your-Own-Way (PYOW) basis only.

How many years of formal Arabic instruction are required prior to applying for the CASA program?
Applicants should complete at least 3 years of formal instruction in Arabic prior to applying to the CASA program. If you have had two years along with an intensive summer program and feel you are ready to apply, you are welcome to do so. The Selection Exam, which is part of the application process, will help determine your level of ability.

Does CASA offer beginning or intermediate level courses?
CASA only offers advanced level coursework. It does not offer beginning or intermediate level courses in Arabic.

Funding

What is CASA's source of funding?
CASA has historically been funded by the U.S. Department of Education (USED) with additional funding from a variety of other sources.  For the 2016-2017 Fellows, no federal funds were used.  We are in the process of applying for renewed funding from the USED, but due to significant cuts in this funding, CASA is actively searching for additional sources of funding to continue this important program.

Can other sources of funding be used in support of CASA studies?
Applicants are encouraged to seek funding from other available sources, such as Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) fellowships, NFLI, Fulbright Hays Students Scholarship, and the Volunteer Forever Scholarship, for their CASA studies.

What does a CASA fellowship include?
CASA Fellowships cover: tuition for courses, a modest monthly stipend, and round-trip airfare. Travel is restricted for CASA's program dates only; travel arrangements outside of the designated program dates will be the Fellow's financial responsibility. For more information on included Fellowship costs, please visit our "What the Fellowship Covers" page.

What expenses are NOT included in the fellowship award?
All Fellows are responsible for paying the CASA non-refundable program fee, selection exam fee to ACTFL, some housing/living expenses, required medical insurance, costs for travel preparations (such as passports, visas, required medical exams, etc.), and personal travel outside of CASA's program dates. Pay-Your-Own-Way (PYOW) Fellows are responsible for tuition and airfare, in addition to the expenses listed above. 

Programs

Does CASA offer a Summer-Only program?
CASA no longer offers a summer-only program; CASA I Fellows participate in a 9 month program starting with a fall term in September and going through the spring, ending in May.

What is the status of the CASA II and III programs?
Both CASA II and III continue to be suspended due to funding, and we are working on resuming them as soon as possible.

Application Process

When will the CASA I application be available for 2018-19?
Application and instructions are usually updated by early October.

What is the CASA I application deadline for 2018-19?
Completed application and required supporting documents are usually due within the first week of January. Dates are usually finalized for the coming year by early October. Please see Application page for details.

Will I get a confirmation that my application was received and is complete?
The new application software will not allow you to submit your application until it is complete. We will contact you if we need any additional materials to complete your file.

I applied for CASA I and am wondering when I will learn whether I have been accepted?
Due to complications with the exam this year, the Selection Committee will meet in late March and notification letters will be sent out by early April.

Program Location

I have heard that CASA was not held in Cairo in recent years. Will the program continue at AUC (American University in Cairo) in the future?
Our goal is to continue the program at both The American University in Cairo and Qasid Intitute in Amman going forward; however, this will depend on the Harvard Global Support Services (GSS) assessment of the security situation in each location. Harvard GSS will continue to monitor events in the region and we will ensure that all fellows, prospective applicants and CASA partners are kept informed of our plans for the upcoming application year. For now we encourage everyone who is interested in the program, to apply.

Recommendations

Can my recommendation letters and transcripts be sent electronically to CASA?
Our current online application allows applicants to input the name and contact information of their references. References will then receive an email with a link to upload (PDF) or type in their letter. Signed letters of recommendation on University letterhead is preferred when possible. Please see the Application section of this website for further details on recommendation letters.

Current Fellows

How do I report my Fellowship when I do my taxes?
Please visit Harvard’s Student Financial Services site to help guide you. Select the Federal Taxes link on the left and scroll down to the section for Scholarships and Stipends. Within this section there is a link to the IRS Publication 970 which explains how these items should be reported. Please note, you will not receive any tax forms from CASA. In addition, Harvard representatives are not permitted to give you individual tax advice, and we would suggest that you seek professional advice from a qualified accountant or attorney if you encounter complicated tax situations.