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It’s that time of year again: NSLI-Y notification time. So far, finalists for Russian summer and Arabic summer have heard back, leaving Hindi summer and year, Korean summer and year; Russian year; Arabic year; Persian summer; Turkish summer and year; and Chinese summer and year all still waiting. Seeing as I’ve applied for Chinese year, that means me. *sigh*

Before I go any further, I want to congratulate all of this year’s new NSLI-Y finalists! You are all about to have the most amazing summer of your lives! I hope you make the most of every minute that you have abroad: with your new friends, with your host families, with language practice, with everything. It FLIES by. Remember to be respectful and attentive, and if you have the choice between English and your host language, choose your host language, always! Test the waters outside your comfort zone and hang out with your host family instead of your American group. You will learn so much that way. 🙂

Now, as I was saying, NSLI-Y notifications. Yeah, that’s fun. Because American Councils, the organization that reads all the applications and makes the decisions, doesn’t tell us when anything will come out. They just say, “All applicants will be notified by mid-April.” AND, even though we know the notification order and dates from last year, we STILL don’t know because those change from year to year. Fabulous, right? And that’s why we’re all so nervous. Supposedly, no year programs will hear until at least early April, so I’m not freaked out yet, just at a stage of excited calm. But come April 1st, I will probably explode. Just saying.

If I become a finalist for Chinese year, I will spend 10 months in Beijing or Shanghai. I could also be assigned Kaohsiung, Taiwan. I would love to visit Taiwan someday, but I’m still unsure of whether I would want to spend my NSLI-Y year there if that’s what they gave me. Placement aside, Chinese year would be a gap year for me if I get it: a year in between my high school senior year and my college freshman year. So, even if I don’t make it, I’ll get to go to college where I can study Chinese and linguistics and do study abroad and all that cool stuff. But I REALLY hope I make NSLI-Y!

Finally, to all you other NSLI-Y applicants still waiting, good luck to you! Remember to check out the links on the left, and also remember: Whatever happens, you are awesome! 😀

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