About the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange (CBYX) program

The Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Program (CBYX), known in Germany as the Parlamentarisches Patenschafts Programm (PPP), was inaugurated in 1983 by the U.S. Congress and the German Bundestag. This public diplomacy initiative is designed to strengthen ties between the youth of Germany and the U.S. by facilitating international dialogue and cooperation. CBYX scholars return with an expanded global perspective and awareness of each other’s culture, society, history and politics.

The CBYX program is funded by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Programmatic Snapshots

  • More than 17,000 American and German students have participated in the program since its inception in 1983.
  • CBYX participants have the opportunity to meet and interact with both German and American government officials prior to departure and throughout the year.
  • During International Education Week each November, current CBYX students and alumni make presentations about their home and host countries in their schools and throughout their communities.
  • CBYX Alumna Anna Lührmann (born June 14, 1983) became the youngest-ever member of the German Parliament in 2002. She became involved in the party at thirteen.

Program Overview

American CBYX participants attend various pre-departure activities in the U.S. in order to meet other scholarship winners and prepare for their year abroad. Upon arrival in Germany, participants begin language instruction courses and attend an intensive orientation that introduces German customs and essential communication skills. When participants return to the U.S., they are given the opportunity to share their experiences through special presentations to classmates and other interested community groups.

The CBYX program is administered regionally by a consortium of non-profit student exchange organizations, including AFS, ASSE, CIEE, FLAG, and YFU. For more information and to find out how to apply, visit the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange website.

Where do American CBYX students come from?

To apply through AFS, students must reside in one of the following states: CT, DE, ME, MD, MA, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, VT, DC.  Eligible students are U.S. nationals, citizens or permanent residents.

What is the selection process for American CBYX students?

AFS offers full academic scholarships to 50 highly qualified high school students (aged 15-18) based on their competitive academic record (3.0 GPA or higher), emotional maturity, cultural sensitivity, curiosity, and open-mindedness. Semi-finalists are chosen after an initial review of applications, and are asked to participate in group and individual selection events conducted by AFS staff and volunteers in or near their local community. CBYX Finalists and Alternates are announced in the spring.

For information on how to apply to CBYX for American students, visit the CBYX website.
For information on how to apply to CBYX for German students, visit the AFS-Germany website.