International Education Awards Announced!

On September 28, 2012, the U.S. Department of Education and the International and Foreign Language Education (IFLE) office awarded nearly $650,000 for Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 new grants under the Title VI American Overseas Research Centers (AORC) Program.  The grants support the establishment or operation of ten overseas research centers in Africa, Central Asia, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, South Asia, Southeast Asia, West Africa, and Western Europe. 


The AORC Program provides funds to eligible consortia of U.S. institutions of higher education that are incorporated as Centers for the purpose of promoting postgraduate research, area studies, and exchanges. The Centers meet this purpose via a broad range of scholarly and operational activities such as-- research and networking opportunities for scholars; outreach projects that contribute to understanding the culture, language, and history of the country or region where the Centers are located;  language training programs; conferences to explore relevant topics and issues; and support services such lodging and assistance with research clearances. 


These Centers serve an important and a unique role in strengthening the U.S. capacity in area studies and language training because they make it possible for  American scholars and international scholars to learn from one another in a cultural immersion experience. In addition to the kinds of projects described above, the  FY 2012 competition announced an invitational priority to encourage “projects that propose outreach and related activities designed to inform scholars and faculty at community colleges and minority-serving institutions (MSIs) of potential fellowship and other research and professional development opportunities at the overseas centers and that encourage and facilitate the participation of these individuals in the Centers’ programs.”  The following activities are examples of how the Centers will use their new grant awards to address the invitational priority: 


  • Develop South Asia coursework and pedagogy methods with faculty at Huston-Tillotson University
  • Increase the number of applicants and participants from community colleges and MSIs in professional development and research opportunities in Mongolia
  • Target historically black colleges and universities, small colleges, and community colleges that have been underrepresented among scholars of Indonesia in the United States

It is also worth noting that the American Institute for Indonesian Studies (AIFIS), a new grantee Center, will be engaging in projects that complement the Department’s U.S. – Indonesia Higher Education Partnership initiatives. For example, AIFIS will host symposia and lectures in Jakarta for visiting American researchers and Indonesian scholars, to promote intellectual exchange and provide a place for these scholars to network.


FY 2012  American Overseas Research Centers



U.S. Location by State

Overseas Location

FY 2012 Grant Award

American Institute of Indian Studies




American Research Institute of the South Caucasus


Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia


American Institute for Sri Lankan Studies




West African Research Association





Cyprus American Archaeological Research Institute




American Institute for Indonesian Studies




The American Academy in Rome




American Institute of Bangladesh Studies




American Institute of Pakistan Studies


Islamabad, Lahore, Karachi


American Center for Mongolian Studies





For more information about the American Overseas Research Center Program visit