Studying abroad is not just a journey of distance and geography, but of culture and self-transformation. Discover yourself through new and challenging experiences. Find the U you’ve been looking for.
YFU is the intercultural exchange program for you if you’re a U.S. high school student, a recent graduate, or a busy adult who wants to experience another part of the world. Choose from Youth Programs, Young Adult/ Gap Year or Adult Study Tours, all of which allow you to immerse yourself in another culture, learn a new language and meet like-minded individuals who all believe in our mission.
With YFU, you'll appreciate the nuances of a foreign language, and test your confidence in new situations. Although your YFU learning adventure will last only a short time, your journey abroad will have a powerful, life-changing impact. Study abroad with YFU to develop an understanding of a faraway place, and also an understanding of an inner place.
When you join YFU, you join an expert global exchange network with more than 60 years of experience in more than 60 countries. From application completion and travel accommodations to adjusting to your exchange, our experienced Admissions Counselors and volunteers are here to support you.
Choose from a year, semester, summer or specialty program that allows you to immerse yourself in another culture, learn a new language and live with a host family who will open their home and hearts to you. YFU Youth Programs are for you if you’re a U.S. high school student or recent graduate, ages 15-18 and want to experience another part of the world.
Young Adult/ Gap Year Programs:
Study abroad with YFU! Live with a host family, attend a college and/or participate in volunteer programs. It is the perfect adventure for a young adult ready to make a difference in today’s world. Some programs are offered to students up to the age of 26.
Adult Study Tours:
Travel with fellow cultural enthusiasts who share a sincere interest in learning about another culture while representing the US. YFU Adult Study Tours are unique group travel opportunities for those ages 19 and up, to enjoy set itineraries and group leaders who will ensure you get the most of the exchange experience.
Alayna, Summer to Japan Alumna
Timidly, I crept into the cluttered, tiny kitchen. There was hardly enough room for MaMa, my Japanese host mother, to move around in.
“Can I help you?” I asked her in Japanese.
“Yes,” she replied, and put me straight to work. She handed me a bowlful of rice. I knew what to do at that point, and rinsed it in the sink until the water came clean. But all of a sudden, a question came to my mind.
“MaMa, why do we wash the rice first?”
“Not good taste,” she told me. She pointed to the bin of thick, stinky paste used to make homemade pickles on the wide windowsill. “Onaji; it’s the same.” No wonder we washed the dust off the rice!
Expand your world.The amazing thing about studying abroad is that the experience is different for everyone. What you get out of a global exchange is unique to you:
- Discover and develop personal strengths like independence, confidence and tolerance
- Gain a new, global perspective
- Increase proficiency in another language
- Meet remarkable people and build lifelong friendships
- Immerse yourself in different cultures
- Learn how to interact with people from different backgrounds
- Qualify for preferred college admissions
- Enhance global career opportunities
- Feb. 12 – YFU Information Night & Open House
Please Join Us for an Information Night at YFU Headquarters We will discuss our study abroad program options for high school students, gap year programs for recent graduates, and study tour programs for educators and other adult participants. Refreshments will be served. Youth For Understanding USA 641 S St NW Education Center (Lower Level) Washington, DC 20001 4:30 [...]Read More
- February 3rd – Gap Year Workshop
Join the Admissions Team at 8:00 PM ET to participate in a short presentation about YFU Study Abroad opportunities. Learn about YFU’s varied gap year programs from our traditional homestay, to volunteering, to internships and more.Read More
- February 23 – Learn About YFU Study Abroad
Join the Admissions Team at 6:00 PM ET to participate in a short presentation about YFU Study Abroad opportunities. Learn about a journey not just of distance and geography but of culture and self-transformation. Become a part of a Host Family, learn a language and test your confidence in new situations.Read More