Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Abroad program 2018/2019 for U.S. citizens (Fully Funded)

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Application Deadline: December 5, 2017 at 11:59pm PST.

The Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Abroad program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, is offering American high school students and recent graduates full scholarships to study for one academic year in countries with significant Muslim populations.

YES Abroad program goals are to:

  • Enable students to positively and accurately represent their experience as Americans and breakdown stereotypes in their host communities through daily interactions
  • Promote mutual understanding between the United States and YES Abroad countries by providing the opportunity for students to form lasting relationships with their host families and friends
  • Develop the necessary skills for students to be leaders in the global community


Basic Eligibility Information

  • U.S. citizen
  • 15-18.5 years of age at start of program
  • Enrolled in high school (including home school) at the time of application
  • For the following countries, prior French skills are required: Morocco, Senegal
  • The YES Abroad program seeks applicants of all racial, ethnic, religious, socio-economic backgrounds, sexual orientations, and welcomes students with disabilities.


The YES Abroad scholarship program provides the following for participants:

  • Domestic round-trip airfare as well as room and board for the National Pre-Departure Orientation
  • Round-trip airfare between the participant’s domestic home region and host community abroad
  • In-country support, cultural activities, and school tuition (where applicable)
  • Room and board with a host family
  • Emergency accident and sickness coverage in the host country
  • Host country visa fees
  • Re-entry orientation at the scheduled conclusion of the program, as well as membership in “International Exchange Alumni,” the Department of State’s exchange alumni network, which includes access to relevant resources and professional contacts are also provided
  • A modest monthly stipend, reflective of typical costs that would be seen in the host country is also provided. This stipend covers costs associated with the student’s basic needs while in their host country
  • Cell phone while on program

Common costs that are not covered by the YES Abroad program include:

  • Costs associated with obtaining a valid U.S. passport in time for the host country visa application process. This passport must expire no earlier than six months after the scheduled program end date
  • Required medical examinations and immunizations
  • Pocket spending money for personal expenses above and beyond basic needs

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Abroad program 2018/2019

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