Cultural Vistas & AFS-USA Announce Innovative Partnership to Strengthen Impact of Exchange Programs

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Nonprofit Partnership Will Broaden Reach, Engage Alumni, and Increase Impact of Each Organization's International Exchange Programs

I am confident that this partnership will enable both organizations to further fulfill their missions of providing life-changing learning experiences to all those we serve.

Cultural Vistas and AFS-USA, both longstanding members of the international exchange community, are pleased to announce the formation of a new partnership aimed at expanding the intercultural training and professional exchange opportunities offered by each organization.

Both AFS-USA and Cultural Vistas share a commitment to providing more Americans with opportunities to gain meaningful international experiences. Each organization is authorized by the U.S. Department of State as a J-1 Exchange Visitor Program sponsor – AFS-USA for secondary students and Cultural Vistas for intern, teacher, and trainee programs.

Related Video - A Message from Cultural Vistas President & CEO

In this new endeavor, the two nonprofits bring a shared commitment to experiential learning and the common goals of increasing intercultural education and understanding, enhancing skills and leadership development while impacting more lives through exchange.

"We're thrilled to partner with AFS-USA in order to provide more cultural exchange opportunities for people around the world," said Robert Fenstermacher, Cultural Vistas President and CEO and himself an alumnus of an AFS high school exchange in what was then West Berlin. "My personal experience with AFS had a tremendous impact on me both personally and professionally, so I am confident that this partnership will enable both organizations to further fulfill their missions of providing life-changing learning experiences to all those we serve."

"Our mission to equip global citizens with the skills they need for making a positive impact on today's world requires that AFS-USA extend its focus beyond the life-changing high school exchanges we've sponsored for the last 65 years. Through this innovative partnership with Cultural Vistas, we're confident that our collective experience and expertise in the field of intercultural learning will have a significant impact on preparing people of all ages to meet the challenges of the 21st century," said Jorge Castro, AFS-USA President and Partner Director.

AFS-USA, a leader in high school student exchange for nearly seven decades, will be afforded a new path to engage its vast alumni and international partner network in career-building internships in the United States and abroad. One such program will be offered next summer that will provide an eight-week internship and immersion experience.

Online learning tools developed by AFS-USA, will enable Cultural Vistas to expand upon the intercultural training and educational resources and support it provides to its international interns and trainees who participate in exchange programs in the United States.

About Cultural Vistas

A nonprofit organization, Cultural Vistas annually serves more than 5,000 students, professionals, and emerging leaders through career-focused international internships, educational study tours, language immersion and cultural exchange programs in the United States and 100-plus countries around the world. Cultural Vistas is committed to its mission to enrich minds, advance global skills, build careers, and connect lives through international exchange. – Learn more at

Follow @CulturalVistas on Twitter


AFS is a worldwide, nonprofit organization that has been leading international high school student exchange for more than 65 years. Each year, AFS-USA sends more than 1,400 American students abroad and welcomes 2,500 international high school students to study in the United States and live with American host families. AFS-USA is the largest member of the worldwide AFS network, which includes more than 50 countries and approximately 45,000 volunteers and staff. – Learn more at

Follow @AFSUSA on Twitter

Anthony Naglieri
anaglieri (at) culturalvistas (dot) org

Marlene Baker
mbaker (at) afsusa (dot) org

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