Most DLNSEO education programs fall under the National Security Education Program (NSEP), which was established by the David L. Boren National Security Education Act (NSEA) of 1991 to improve expertise in languages and cultures critical to U.S. national security. The program was designed to respond to the shortfall of U.S. citizens and federal employees with high-level skills in critical languages and cultures. The five objectives for NSEP programs are to:
- Provide resources, accountability, and flexibility to meet the national security education needs of the United States;
- Increase the quality of teaching and learning of foreign languages and international studies, especially in areas critical to U.S. national security;
- Produce an increased pool of applicants for work in federal departments and agencies with national security responsibilities;
- Expand, along with other federal agencies, the international experience, knowledge base and perspectives on which the United States relies, and finally;
- Permit the federal government to advocate for international education.
NSEP accomplishes its legislative mission through two major activities:
- Scholarships and fellowships to individuals, who in turn provide service in federal positions of national security, and
- Grants to educational institutions to assist and promote changes to the way American students learn language and culture.
Programs and initiatives have evolved around these two core activities to target important national security needs as well as foreign language innovations. Today, NSEP oversees multiple critical initiatives designed to attract, recruit, and train a future national security workforce. The program annually prepares and submits a summative report to the White House and Congress highlighting accomplishments and results over the past year. To view reports published by NSEP, click here.