Our emphasis on language acquisition combined with a curriculum at the intersection of theory and practice provides U.S. military officers with the ideal training for the next phase of their careers.
The Middlebury Institute of International Studies has a longstanding relationship with the U.S. military, including the Foreign Area Officer program.
Our Foreign Area Officer Program
We offer two options for Foreign Area Officers (FAOs) who are approved for either a 12-month or 18-month (no thesis) program. Both are highly customizable, giving you the opportunity to develop critical skills in foreign language through content-based courses integrated into the curriculum, human security and development, cybersecurity, anti-money laundering, and conflict resolution, while focusing on your region of expertise through independent directed study.
At the time of admission, Foreign Area Officers will be offered a customized degree program in either of the following:
Study at the Naval Postgraduate School
We have a close partnership with the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS), which is also located in Monterey. This gives you access to an expanded curriculum as you may simultaneously take courses at both the Institute and NPS.
Though the campus is based in historic downtown Monterey, you'll be in classes with graduate students from around the globe, giving you the valuable experience of working with civilians. Our small class sizes give you the opportunity to work closely with expert faculty and hone the skills you need for your next assignment.
Our campus is a military-friendly community, located near the Defense Language Institute, the Naval Post Graduate School, and a VA outpatient clinic. We also offer opportunities for spouses and families to be part of our campus community, including free language classes through one of our student clubs, B.U.I.L.D.
We ensure that tuition costs are covered for all officers awarded medium- and high-cost slots within the FAO program. Most officers awarded low-cost slots will also be able to be funded, but this is determined on a case-by-case basis.
We offer a host of resources for students with families and opportunities for spouses to take advantage of our community.
All FAOs who have satisfactorily completed and/or achieved the following will be eligible:
- Bachelor’s degree
- Captain’s Career Course
- Second language proficiency
Applying for the FAO Program
We accept applications on a rolling admissions cycle. The 12-month program is available only for fall admission. The 18-month program is available for both spring and fall admission.
To be considered for the FAO program, you must meet these two application requirements in addition to the application requirements for your master's program:
- In a career objectives essay, you must do the following:
- Describe your professional goals and how our FAO program will help you achieve those goals.
- Indicate the amount of time that you have been approved to complete this course (i.e., 12 months or 18 months). If 18 months, please confirm that the thesis is not required.
- Specify your funding level (i.e., low-, medium-, or high-cost).
- You must submit evidence of the Captain’s Career Course.
Application Fee Waivers
Application fee waivers are available to FAOs.
Please contact us for more information.