AFS International Canada
Age Requirement: 15 to 18
Academic Requirements: Grades must be satisfactory
Time Periods: Summer programs (about six weeks), semester programs or an entire year
Financial Aid: Bursaries available
Country Options: Jamaica, Japan, Venezuela, Australia to name just a few!
More info: www.afscanada.org
Exchange programs organized by the Government of Canada; an excellent way to learn about our enormous country from a new point of view!
Age Requirement: Varies depending on program anywhere from age 10 to 21
Time Periods: Varies depending on program
Financial Aid: Get this the Government of Canada will often pay travel costs for eligible participants; many programs take into special consideration traditionally under-represented groups, like youth with disabilities or from low-income families
Country Options: This is obvious, right?
More info: www.exchanges.gc.ca
Student Travel Schools Inc.
Age Requirement: 14 to 18
Academic Requirements: 65% average
Time Periods: One year; STS also offers a chance to visit one country in one semester and another country during the other!
Financial Aid: Scholarships are awarded to students going to Europe and are based on grades and teacher recommendation
Country Options: Mostly European countries; also Brazil, Australia and South Africa.
More info: www.sts-education.com
EF High School Year:
Age Requirement: 15 to 18
Academic Requirements: Not specific, but definitely a consideration
Time Periods: One semester or the entire year
Financial Aid: Based on academic achievement and financial need
Country Options: Mostly Europe (e.g. France, Germany and Great Britain); also Australia, New Zealand and the U.S
More info: www.ef.com/master/hsy
Rotary Youth Exchange:
Age Requirement: 16 to 18 at time of departure
Academic Requirements: You have to be in the top third of your class
Time Periods: Long term is 12 months; short term is four to six months
Financial Aid: Basic needs and costs (like food) are covered by the Rotary Club where you will be traveling
Country Options: Long term: mainly Europe but also Japan, South Africa and Argentina
More info: www.rotary5550.org
Nacel Canada Inc.
Age Requirement: 15 to 18 on day of arrival
Academic Requirements: At least two years of study in languages (French, English or Spanish) and an above-average academic record
Time Periods: One semester (five months) or a full year (10 months)
Financial Aid: Full scholarships offered
Country Options: Europe Spain, Germany, Great Britain; also Canada, Brazil, Mexico and Japan.
More info: www.nacel.org/canada
Of course, there are many more programs out there ask your school counselor for info on exchange programs. Even if you can't go on an exchange, why not consider hosting a student from another country? Many programs (Nacel is one example) offer monthly support to hosting families.
It's an exciting way to teach someone from another country about Canada they become lifelong friends as they experience their year abroad with you!