and their Parents.
Change Your Life,
Change the World.
Educators, employers, colleges, parents and our alumni all agree that the benefits of international exchange reach far beyond the time a student spends abroad. Experiencing a new language, living with a host family and adapting to a new culture produces benefits that will last a lifetime.
Youth For Understanding USA Exchanges Recognized for Quality and Safety
Youth For Understanding USA is the only organization to receive Full Listing in all three CSIET listing categories: Inbound Long-term, Outbound Long-term and Short-term Inbound/Outbound programs. This singular achievement reflects YFU’s global commitment to quality, and consistent application of CSIET standards throughout the international YFU network.
Families around the world trust YFU because of our strong reputation for quality, high safety standards, and knowledgeable and local support network. As one of the world’s oldest and largest exchange organizations, YFU has provided study abroad opportunities in 60 countries to more than 250,000 high school students over the last 60+ years. Read the full news article.
The Benefits of Choosing a YFU Exchange to Study Abroad
When you choose YFU for your son or daughter, you choose an international community of organizations that have more than fifty years of worldwide exchange experience. YFU has successfully exchanged 250,000 students. YFU is here to help every step of the way. YFU will:
- Guide you and your child through the application process;
- Prepare you and your child through handbooks and orientations
- Be a resource to you and your child to obtain passports, visa’s, additional insurance (if needed) and school credit;
- Arrange for your child’s domestic and international travel;
- Provide travel support;
- Placement with a carefully screened host family;
- Enrollment in a local high school, for academic programs;
- Provide a network of professional staff and well-trained volunteers to support you and your child throughout the exchange experience.
These are some of the many reasons why more than 4,500 parents trust us with their teenagers each year. When you chose YFU, you choose peace of mind.
It’s an Education.
With college applicants at an all time high, it is becoming increasingly difficult for even the best students to stand out when applying to schools. The YFU exchange experience will offer them a clear advantage. YFU students gain a global perspective that makes them ideal candidates in an ever growing, challenging and diverse academic community. YFU alumni are preferred in admissions in more than 150 colleges and universities throughout the United States. See our Beyond Exchange PDF for more information.
The very best and most effective way to achieve fluency in another language is by total immersion in its culture. Students vastly improve their language competency and many earn advanced language placement in college. YFU year and semester students have the added benefit of attending secondary school in their host country. Students find that their overseas courses help them develop effective learning habits, and prepare them for more intensive future college studies
It’s a Future.
It is a fact that in today’s competitive job market fluency in another language coupled with the ability to comprehend another culture gives the YFU exchange student a tremendous advantage when choosing a career. Business and industry require workers with international knowledge and skills, who speak languages and understand the cultures of the countries with which they do business. When employers select a YFU alumnus, they know they are making a solid investment in a person who is flexible and shows an elevated level of maturity, superior problem solving skills, and an intuitive understanding of another country and its people. YFU students pursue careers in international trade, law, business, Academia, and many other disciplines.
It’s a Sense of Direction.
Although a YFU learning adventure might only last a summer, a semester or a full school year, each YFU student’s life is changed forever. Parents of YFU students say their teenager has returned from the exchange experience with greater confidence and maturity. YFU students develop an increased ability to assess unfamiliar situations and respond appropriately. Parents speak of the personal growth and development they have observed in their son or daughter following their study abroad, and they find great satisfaction in the positive impact the YFU experience has had on their child’s life. Also, through a YFU exchange, students become more adaptable and learn how to form lifelong friendships more easily. YFU students repeatedly state that the exchange experience provided them with a stronger sense of direction and self.
It’s an Investment.
As you can see a YFU Study Abroad program for your student is an investment in their future from college to their careers. YFU USA offers a variety of scholarship opportunities along with the possibility to pay over time depending on time of application. Tuition is due in full by the payment deadline: April 1st (Summer Departure) or October 1st (Winter Departure).
“Some students will be corporate chief executive officers, or government officials, while others will choose different leadership roles and lives. Regardless of the path they take, students will benefit from exposure to international education.”
Chairman and CEO
Coca Cola Company
“We had an excellent experience with YFU, and our son had a life changing experience as a result of his travels to Japan.”
The YFU USA Budget: Where Does the Money Go?
Country Support – 30%
- Enrollment in a school
- Placement with a carefully selected host family
- National office and YFU Area Representative support while on program
Student Direct Expenses– 37%
- Domestic and international airfare
- International gateway airport assistance
Student Support – 24%
- Student Support Staff available 24 hours/day
- Volunteer training and reimbursement
Overhead – 5%
- Operational expenses; YFU offices, utilities, office supplies, administrative staff, and telecommunications
- Publications, printing, and postage
Orientation – 4%
- Professional orientations
- Written materials
YFU programs have exchanged more than 250,000 students since 1951, many of these years coinciding with war or international conflict. As tensions and political uncertainty in the Middle East continue, our top priority continues to be student safety. On a daily basis, YFU USA monitors safety conditions issued through our partner offices overseas, the US Department of State, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and the World Health Organization (WHO).
- Students continue to remain in the care of their host families. In the event of an emergency, students should make every effort to contact their natural family, as well as their Area Representative and District office.
- Students are reminded that they are young ambassadors of their home country and to exercise tact and restraint in their expression of political beliefs, and are advised to not become actively involved in political activities or protests. Such involvement may be misunderstood, resented, or disliked.
- Safety conditions worldwide will be monitored using embassies and government officials to assess conditions. In the event situations warrant program changes, YFU will make such decisions on a case-by-case basis.
Our mission is to prepare young people for their responsibilities and opportunities in a changing, interdependent world. Our mission is even more focused and critical in times of international crisis. We believe that creating the bonds of friendships between individuals and their communities is the strongest way to develop bridges of understanding, tolerance, and peace.
The U.S. State Department regularly updates its website to provide information about student travel and conditions abroad. YFU USA requires all American students to register their travel with the Department of State before they go abroad and to make updates while on program. Please visit the Department of State web page at https://travelregistration.state.gov/ibrs/ to register. If your child does not have host family information yet, he or she can enter the YFU Office address.