Host an international exchange student – bring a student like this into your home


Aleksandra Tsymbal

Sasha and her host mom Tina while they were on the trip in Washington D.C.

AFS Intercultural Programs is a leading study abroad program for secondary school students, supported and facilitated by trained staff and volunteers. AFS offers carefully-designed international adventures that are fun, challenging, and will change lives forever. The AFS students are not tourists, the experience helps to mature and develop skills that are useful throughout the lifetime for the participants, and for the host families as well. 

The question is, how does the program work? All AFS families should fill in the special application, they should tell about themselves, their household life, the area where they live and the school district. The family can choose the student, or AFS connects them together by the same interests. The AFS is a non-profit organization, host families are not paid, and they have to provide a bed and food for a student. The students arrive in August or September and begin their exchange year at the host community. Students go to school in their host country, participate at family events, help whenever it’s needed, make friends, and do a lot of other fun and exciting things to share their culture and know the host culture as well!

This year Highlands High School had a great opportunity to be a part of the AFS by hosting an exchange student from Russia. Junior Sasha Tsymbal is part of Fort Thomas now and had the great experience at the American high school. “It was an amazing year! I still cannot believe that I am here! The fact that I have the opportunity to study in another language impresses me a lot. However, I did not only learn English at school, but I was an actual part of the life here. I met so many interesting people, and I am sure that we will stay in touch after this year as well.” She participated at all the events, did well at her classes and grades, made a lot of friends and understood how the school system works at the other side of the globe. 

“My host family means the world to me now. I cannot imagine my life without these people! They are always ready to help, listen to me, and support me.  They became a second family for me, and I can’t even express how thankful I am to them”, she said.

16-year-old Khadija from Bahrain is also hoping to achieve the same dream-like opportunities that Sasha had.

Meet a part of her application: “Khadija is a kind young woman who aspires to go to medical school to study dermatology! Named after her grandmother, Khadija is the second of 4 siblings, and is close with her older brother; the two share a taste in television and movies. Every weekend her extended family visits and the big group enjoys tennis matches, picnics, and board games. Khadija is a skilled artist who has been drawing since her youth, a talented public speaker, a debate star, and fledgling poet. She and her friends enjoy going to the movies or the beach. She cannot wait to experience American life firsthand!” 

Accept an exchange student into your family and have an amazing year full of exciting emotions, cultural experiences, and foreign relatives for the rest of your life!

This is a great opportunity to become a global citizen by knowing something new from a person from another part of the Earth. Contact AFS USA now and accept an exchange student for the next school year! Their information is below!

For more information, contact: Barbara Mcmanus at 5136082781 | [email protected] | 1.800.AFS.INFO 

or go to the AFS website: become a host family now