Host a Sponsored Program Student
Cluster Students - CB, FSA/FLEX, and YES
About AFS Sponsored (Scholarship) Student Programs:AFS currently works with three sponsored student programs: CB, FSA/FLEX and YES.
- CB (Congress-Bundestag) students come from Germany.
- FSA/FLEX students are from Belarus, Moldova, Russia, Ukraine, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan (former Soviet Union republics).
- YES students are from Albanin, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bosnia/Herzegovina
- Bulgaria, Cameroon, Egypt, Gaza, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Isreal, Jordan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kuwait, Lebanon, Liberia, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mali, Morocco, Mozambique, Nigeria, Oman,Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Suriname, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, West Bank and Yemen (primarily Muslim countries).
The Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Initiative (CBYX) was created in 1983 by legislation passed by the U.S. Congress and the German Bundestag. In Germany the program is known as the Parlamentarisches Patenschafts-Programm (PPP). At the outset, the CB program was part of the President's International Youth Exchange Initiative and celebrated the 300th anniversary of German settlements in the U.S. The goal was to continue to foster what was seen as a valuable "Transatlantic Bridge" between the U.S. and Germany. AFS was selected to implement the program in its inaugural year, in part due to the long-standing partnership between AFS-USA and AFS Interkulturelle Begegnungen (AFS-Germany). Many remember that in 1947 AFS hosted its first group of German students in the United States only three years after the end of the Second World War.
The Freedom Support Act/Future Leaders Exchange Program (FSA/FLEX) has empowered students to build lasting bridges of friendship and understanding in their U.S. host communities. Many have already returned to put their experience in the U.S. to work to help build the futures of their home countries and communities.
The Partners for Learning Youth Exchange Study (YES) Program began with the 2003-2004 year. The September 11th terrorist attacks of 2001 and the negative view of Americans held in some regions, as well as the anti-Islamic or anti-Arab sentiment held by many in the United States, brought renewed focus to the need for improved understanding across our cultures. Having long known that the benefits of high school exchange programs extend beyond the student into the community at large, the international education community responded to this call with an initiative to increase exchanges between the United States and countries with significant Muslim populations.
While these three scholarship programs were created with their own aims at different points in history, they are all similar in that they originated as bills passed by the U.S. Congress, representing the will of the public to support intercultural learning as an important aspect of U.S. public diplomacy. Many communities that have hosted exchange students or sent their own children on exchanges overseas know that the benefits of exchange programs spread far beyond the individual participants. Families who host, teachers and friends in schools, and volunteers and others in the community who interact with the student all benefit from getting to know a young person from a different culture. Belief in the goodwill and personal skills fostered through exchange programs is what fuels the continued commitment of resources to programs like CB and FSA/FLEX and creates the impetus for new ones like the Partnerships for Learning YES Initiative.
At the community level, the sponsored students' experiences are much like that of other AFS students. The goals of their programs are primarily met by living with their host family and attending school. They participate in local orientations, meet with their liaisons once a month, and their support issues go through the same local channels.
However, sponsored students are also responsible for participating in a number of educational activities designed to enhance their insights into how the U.S. functions, provide impetus for a broader view of the U.S. than they might find in their immediate surroundings, and assist them in gaining an understanding of how positive leadership can be exercised. For this reason, our sponsored students are placed in groups or "clusters" within Area Teams within geographically close enough proximity that they can gather six or eight times a year, guided by volunteers who help them to fulfill these learning objectives.
The name and contact information for the Miss Tennky Cluster Coordinator are found in the Area Team portion of the Volunteers link.
Sponsor Student Cluster orientations, community service events, and other required and voluntary activities are found on the Activities page.