New gift enables language study abroad

For WSU students seeking proficiency in the German language, a recent, generous gift to the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) is providing new opportunities for immersive study abroad.

Longtime supporters of CAS and the School of Languages, Cultures, and Race, WSU alumnus Christian Schlect and his wife, Janet, established the Chris Haaf Travel Fund in honor of Christian’s grandfather, who immigrated to the United States from Germany at a young age. The fund provides annual travel awards for up to two SLCR undergraduate or graduate students to participate in education abroad programs or self-directed learning in Germany or Austria. The fund also supports travel to Germany or Austria for students in the School of Music and the Department of Fine Arts.

“Mr. and Mrs. Schlect’s passion for sharing the wonders of Germany with our undergraduates—especially students who have not had the opportunity to travel and explore Europe and the ‘old’ continent—is inspirational,” said SLCR director Carmen R. Lugo-Lugo. “We are immensely grateful to the Schlects for their generosity and look forward to sharing their gift with our students.”

The Schlect’s three children are also WSU alumni, as are Christian’s two brothers and three more of Haaf’s great-grandchildren.

If you would like to support students and programs in the School of Languages, Cultures, and Race, please visit our Scholarships & Endowments page or contact the  CAS Development team at 509-335-1096 or

Students pose in front of a statue abroad.