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News - Youth For Understanding USA

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

YFU USA Re-energizes Brand with New Website, Marketing Materials

Jennifer McKendree

New Modern Look Reflects Enthusiasm for Future, Belief in Power of Young People

Bethesda, MD (July, 2013) –Each year more than 4,500 YFU exchange students are provided opportunities for self-discovery through a global network of families opening their homes and welcoming new experiences through intercultural youth exchange.  This month, educational nonprofit YFU USA unveils a new era in the organization’s 62-year history.  Spearheaded by Marketing and Communications Director and program alumna Erin Helland, YFU launches a new website and related marketing materials, specifically designed to capture the transformative effect of intercultural exchange.

YFU USA has a rich past, built over more than six decades of excellence in cultural exchange, but YFU USA’s leaders also recognize that no organization can rest on a history of success alone.   Today’s marketplace and the savvy, intelligent youth consumer demands that organizations reflect the dynamic time in which we live.  The organization’s new aesthetic reflects this reality.

“At YFU, we know that the exchange experience profoundly impacts students, families and our communities,” Helland said.  “Our programs transcend culture and continents and have enabled millions of global relationships to form. The new and vibrant YFU materials tell a story that honors these relationships and encourages others to join the fun.”  

 In collaboration with creative agency SmithGifford, YFU’s web presence has been redesigned with attractive marketing materials and more relatable content as part of a broader effort to present the YFU brand using colors, images and messages that resonate with a new generation of young people. The new website contains valuable resources for educators to discuss public diplomacy, for American families to consider hosting an international student and opportunities for students to study abroad in more than 40 countries around the world for a summer, semester, or academic school year. YFU’s new campaign invites students, families and volunteers to experience this life changing program: 

She got her charm from her mother. And her love of art from studying abroad. BECOME U.
She has her father’s laugh. And her courage from a year in your family.  COMPLETE U.
He got his kind heart from his mother. And a sense of accomplishment from volunteering.  FIND U.

“While our mission may seem timeless, what we need to do as an organization to remain relevant is not. Our revamped web presence joins fresh marketing materials as part of a broader effort to make 2013 the year of ‘U’ and to connect with youth who are preparing to embark on a transformative journey,” said Michael E. Hill, YFU’s new President & CEO. 

All of YFU’s new materials reflect the organization’s desire to have people discover the joys of joining the YFU family.  Wondering if hosting a student is right for you? Here are just a few of the benefits:
•    Experience a new and exciting family dynamic
•    Give your family a new perspective on your community
•    Connect your family to the world

To learn more, call your local YFU office at 1.800.TEENAGE or visit us at: 

About Youth For Understanding USA
YFU USA is a volunteer-based intercultural student exchange organization founded in 1951 in the wake of World War II to help heal the wounds of a broken world.  As one of the world's oldest, largest, and most respected exchange organizations, it continues to exemplify excellence in educational exchange, providing hosting, volunteer and study abroad opportunities. YFU offers $1.6 million in scholarships each year for American students—more than any other high school exchange organization. 

Through creating global learning opportunities, YFU has promoted international understanding and world peace to more than 250,000 students and their host families. Thousands of parents across the globe trust YFU with their teenagers every year, and thousands of students every year choose YFU to help them discover their inner selves.

YFU advances intercultural understanding, mutual respect and social responsibility through educational exchanges for youth, families and communities. 

To learn more about the different hosting, volunteer, or study abroad opportunities available to you, please call 1.800.TEENAGE (800.833.6243) or visit  For media contact in the US, please call 240.235.2100