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News - Youth For Understanding USA

Latest news about Youth for Understanding USA student exchange programs worldwide – Events – Partnerships.

Have Study Abroad Questions? We Can Help!

Jennifer McKendree

Pop into one of our Virtual Information Nights (VINs) and have your study abroad questions answered LIVE!  Events feature YFU USA alumni, registration staff, and partner country participants to give you a first hand perspective on the applicaiton process AND what you might expect to experience once you reach your study abroad destination.

Study Abroad Session:

  • Tuesday, Nov 27, 9:00 PM- 10:00 PM EST- General Study Abroad

  • Thursday, Dec 6, 7:00 PM- 8:00 PM EST- Germany program/ scholarship focus

  • Tuesday, Dec 18, 9:00 PM- 10:00 PM EST- General Study Abroad

  • Thursday, Jan 3, 9:00 PM- 10:00 PM EST- Scholarships, Scholarships, Scholarships!

  • Tuesday, Jan 22, 8:00 PM- 9:00 PM EST- Topic TBD

  • Tuesday, Feb 5, 9:00 PM- 10:00 PM EST- Topic TBD

  • Thursday, Feb 21, 8:00 PM- 9:00 PM EST- Topic TBD

  • Monday, Mar 4, 9:00 PM- 10:00 PM EST- Topic TBD

  • Tuesday, Mar 12, 8:00 PM- 9:00 PM EST- Topic TBD

Registration for all VIN sessions may be found via the following link:


Jennifer McKendree

YFU honored Farmington Public Schools with its 2018 Partnership Award. The award is given to an organization or corporation that has demonstrated a longstanding partnership with YFU and a strong commitment to provide young people with global intercultural exchange experiences.

The YFU-Farmington Public Schools partnership dates back to at least 1968 when the school system enrolled international exchange students to spend a year of high school studies in the United States. Over the years, leadership at Farmington Public Schools has supported the mission of YFU through enrollment of international students and support of their own students to study abroad in another country.

“Farmington Public Schools has been proud to partner with Youth For Understanding USA for more than 50 years.  This partnership has strengthened our students’ global education both because of the exchange students we receive and also because of the outbound exchange opportunities offered to many Farmington students.  We are honored to be recognized for the warm welcome FPS offers the world.”
George C. Heitsch, Ed.D., Superintendent, Farmington Public Schools

 YFU initially announced the award at its recent 2018 Volunteer Conference in Pittsburgh, PA. The award was formally presented to the Farmington Public School Board by Bill Malloy, YFU Chief of Staff and Barb Kilkka, Community Engagement Director, and 7 current and former YFU students on November 13.

“As nominated by Barb Kilkka, YFU local staff representative for the Oakland County, MI area, it is abundantly clear that Farmington Public Schools is strongly committed to providing young people with global intercultural exchange experiences by opening its doors to YFU's students and volunteers for over 50 years. We are thrilled to have Farmington Public Schools as an important part of our YFU community!”
Scott J. Messing, YFU President and CEO

16 things to do with your exchange student

Jennifer McKendree

You’ve hosted your exchange student for a few months now, and you may be out of ideas for things to do. Remember that there are reasons your exchange student came to America. Education is paramount; however, they likely want to experience our culture and experience typical American life. When you involve your student in family activities, you help fulfill their goals.

  1. National and state parks. Our parks are a treasure, and there’s one near you. They feature breathtaking beauty and learning opportunities.

  2. Historical sites. Learn about American history at landmarks and monuments.

  3. State or county fairs. What’s more American than a fair? Regions across the nation hold festivals and fairs.

  4. City mouse. If you’re hosting a student in the city, go to the country to experience wide-open spaces. If you live in the country, go to the city to experience the bright lights. This welcome change of pace shows our varied landscape.

  5. Orchard. Visit an apple orchard or pumpkin patch. Try cider, pick apples and take a hay ride.

  6. Museum. There may be an exhibit from your student’s country in one of the 35,000 museums in America.

  7. Fishing. Fish from shore, rent a boat or drill a hole in the ice.

  8. Sporting events. Attend a professional, college or high school sporting event. Pick a sport that is played all over the world, like soccer; or choose a sport unique to America. It’s a challenge to explain baseball to someone who has never seen it played before.

  9. Music. Maybe a popular artist is making a tour stop near you, or you can attend a free concert at a local band shell. Make sure it’s music your student likes.

  10. Candy. Exchange students love dessert. Visit a candy or ice cream shop for a treat. Or make a pan of brownies and watch the smile spread across your student’s face.

  11. Meals. Visit a restaurant that features cuisine from your student’s country, or invite your student into your kitchen to help make a traditional dish from their country. They will be glad to experience a taste of home.

  12. Worship. If you attend church or synagogue, invite your exchange student to come along. It may be an interesting experience.

  13. Plays/movies. Attend a play put on by a local company or high school. Go to a popular blockbuster or an off-beat film festival. Experience a drive-in movie theater.

  14. Seasonal activities. Grill out or pack a picnic basket. Rent kayaks. Go leaf watching. Take a sleigh ride, go sledding or ice skating.

  15. The mall. Your student may like to try on clothes.

  16. Visit family. Your student might enjoy meeting your extended family. Bring them along to birthday and holiday celebrations.

Take photos during activities with your exchange student so they can send them home. To help your student feel like a member of your family, put photos on the refrigerator or place them in frames around the house.

Have Study Abroad Questions? Pop in to our Virtual Information Night!

Jennifer McKendree

Pop into our Virtual Information Nights (VIN) and get your study abroad questions answered LIVE!!  This evening’s event will feature our program to Japan with alumni and YFU staff taking your questions.

Study Abroad Session:

  • Thursday, Nov 8, 8:00 PM- 9:00 PM EST

Registration for the Study Abroad sessions can be found via the following link: