How to Support the North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad (NACLO)

There are two ways that you can give to support NACLO: by mailing a check and by giving online.  

Mailing a Check

Make checks payable to:
Carnegie Mellon University
Mail to: North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad
c/o Mary Jo Bensasi
Language Technologies Institute/GHC 5404
Carnegie Mellon University
5000 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Donors should note in the memo area of their check or in a short note that the contribution is for NACLO.
 

Giving Online

Please follow this link to NACLO's giving page at Carnegie Mellon University, which is connected to the NACLO account. On page 2 the preferred designation "Naclo Olympiad" should fill-in automatically.

What Your Donations Help Support

Thank you for choosing to donate to NACLO. Your contributions will be used for the following activities.

Small expenses:

  • Copying handouts and flyers for training sessions at high schools.
  • Transportation from local universities to tranining sessions at high schools.
  • In some cities: rental of conference facilities for the contest in cases where adequate or convenient facilities are not available at a university.
  • Snacks during the contest for students, teachers, and accompanying parents.
  • Scanning and mailing answers for grading.

Large expenses:

  • Travel to the international contest. The cost is around $30,000 per year for two teams of four and a few chaperones.
  • Summer traning program for the international team. For the last two years we have had low cost training via Skype for several weeks followed by a two day training in person at a cost of about $2000.
  • Annual NACLO planning meeting. $15,000.

Your donations will not be used for the following "wish-list" expenses unless you specify that you would like them to be used in this way.

Wish list:

  • We would like to build up a budget that would allow us to have a 2 week training camp for 20 students, which is standard practice for other academic Olympiads. This would include air fare for 20 students, room and board, faculty for the training session, and high school teachers as supervisers.
  • Permanent, full-time staff person. Salary and benefits.
  • Emergency money for the international trip: missed flights, lost or stolen items, illness, inadequate food or accommodations.
  • Two to four weeks' salary for the high school teacher who accompanies the team to the International Contest.

What is the North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad (NACLO)?

The North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad was started in 2006 and has organized an annual linguistics competition every year since. Hundreds of students throughout the United States and Canada compete every year. The students with the highest scores on the exams are selected to represent the United States and Canada in the International Linguistics Olympiad (IOL), which has been held in places such as St. Petersburg, Russia, Stockholm, Sweden, and Beijing, China. In recent years, as many as three teams (one Canadian and two American) have been sent representing NACLO. Donations will help pay part of the expenses for these high school students to travel to the IOL.

The Impact of NACLO

The broader impacts of NACLO are (1) to increase diversity in the fields of linguistics, computational linguistics, language technologies, and computer science (2) to meet workforce needs by increasing the number of students getting degrees in those subjects, and (3) to improve high school and undergraduate education. The broader impact of this supplement is to train eight students and one high school teacher in linguistics, with the expectation that they will spread the knowledge through clubs and other activities.

The Intellectual Merit of NACLO

Currently, linguistics, computational linguistics, and language technologies are taught primarily at the graduate level and to some extent at the undergraduate level. There has been no systematic study of foundational skills that can be introduced before college and can prepare students for college and graduate level courses. The intellectual merit of NACLO is to identify those foundational skills and work them into a curriculum of training exercises and contest problems.