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News - Youth For Understanding USA

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

YFU Alum & Board Member Reaches Top of Mt. Everest

Jennifer McKendree

Grand Forks native climbs Mount Everest, completes Seven Summits

Andrew Towne has reached the top of the world.

The 2000 Grand Forks Central graduate summited Mount Everest late Wednesday night, International Mountain Guides confirmed, completing his quest to reach the highest point on all seven of the world's continents.

Towne, climbing in a group of 25 people including 15 Nepalese sherpas, reached the mountain's peak of 29,035 feet before noon local time.

By summiting Everest, Towne joined the rare club of climbers who have completed the Seven Summits.

According to, a website that tracks climbing statistics, fewer than 300 people in world history have done it.

Read full article from the Grand Forks Herald.

During the climb Andrew has been raising funds scholarships for young adults to partake in the adventure of studying abroad. Read more about his journey here

If you too believe in the transformative power of studying abroad and experiencing another culture, make a donation to Andrew’s scholarship fundraiser today!