Dennis (DJ) Smith

FLAS Fellow
DJ Smith


Dennis (DJ) Smith is a recipient of the 2018-2019 Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowship. The award provides undergraduate, graduate, and professional school students with financial support to develop fluency in less commonly taught languages (LCTLs) and expertise in the regions in which these languages are spoken. Every year the Center for Global Studies awards between 12-15 fellowships to UW students. Click here to learn more.

I completed my undergraduate degree at the University of South Dakota (Go Yotes!) with a double major in Political Science and English. After that, I spent some time in Tanzania with the Peace Corps, sparking my interest in international relations. While I feel comfortable having conversations in Kiswahili, I continue to struggle reading anything past simply structured sentences. In a language where one word is capable of holding all the necessary components of a sentence in English, it is so easy to become lost! FLAS will help my research because of the amount of written data available. Since my research involves looking through data surrounding Tanzania’s education policies, I am thankful for FLAS in allowing me to better my reading abilities and collect information for my research. When finished at the University of Washington, I hope to continue working overseas in East Africa doing development or policy work.