Want to be an Exchange Student?

AFS-USA works toward a more just and peaceful world by providing international and intercultural learning experiences to individuals, families, schools, and communities through a global volunteer partnership.
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Living and studying abroad will prepare you for life in ways that no other experience can–you’ll learn more, gain 
more, and grow more than you thought possible. You’ll be making many important decisions soon. Do it with a “real world” view. Give yourself a competitive edge on college applications and resumes. When you return, you’ll become part of a prestigious international network of AFS Returnees whom you’ll make friends with throughout your life–wherever your life takes you.

                                               Ryan, River Valley  HS

It means you’re studying abroad with one of the most valued, reputable, and experienced leaders of high school student exchange in the world. AFS has 60 years of experience in international education with programs in more than 40 countries. And, it’s one of the largest, community-based, volunteer organizations in the world––that means volunteers committed to the AFS Mission who are working together to give you the best possible experience. These are just a few of the reasons why close to 13,000 students, young adults, and teachers choose AFS for their study abroad experience each year.


While you’re abroad with AFS, you will make friends with people in your host country and with other AFS Exchange Students from around the world. That is one way you support the AFS Mission of creating a world of understanding and peace. And when you return home, your journey begins anew: you become part of a worldwide network of AFS Returnees. That group includes business leaders, politicians, diplomats, educators, entertainers, scientists, journalists, and even an astronaut. Many credit their careers to the experience of living and studying abroad with AFS.

When you return home, you’ll be part of a worldwide network of more than 370,000 people who went abroad with AFS; more than 100,000 live in the United States, while the rest live in more than 100 other countries. As you meet AFS Returnees throughout the world and throughout your life, they’ll share how their experiences helped to shape their lives—and you can share yours. Plus, don’t forget about the connections you’ll make with your host parents, host brothers or sisters, new friends, and other AFS Exchange Students on your program.

Still have questions?  Contact a local volunteer:  afssilverandgold@gmail.com

Postcards From Abroad

Shannon is a Silver and Gold returnee from Spain '12-'13

On Host Families
I feel like I gained more than host parents and host siblings. I also gained host grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins so Christmas and New Years were such a fun time for me. I didn't feel awkward of left out, I felt like I belonged.
On Friends
My favorite thing to do with my friends was just walk around our small town in the evening, always stopping in the candy store, then doing the most ridiculous things in the plaza and streets.
On Food
My host mom was an amazing cook and every day I would come home to the smell of what was for lunch.  The 2 typical dishes of Spain are La Tortilla Patata and La Paella, and I learned how to make both of them so I could make them in the USA.