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ACADEMIC YEAR EXCHANGE STUDENT PROGRAM

End of August - middle of June

Hosting a full academic year exchange student might fit into your family's lifestyle really well! The students come just before the school year starts, and go to classes at the local high school throughout the year. They participate in all the activities any high school student does: sports, arts, community events. Then, they go home shortly after the school year closes. Host families provide housing and food; they come with health insurance and spending money.

GREAT NEWS: If you complete the host family application now, you can start looking at the various students who want to come for 2019-2020! The PAX program typically works with 700-1000 students per year, so there are many to choose from! It's really quite fun, too, to read about their interest--and dream about how they might fit into your family. 

SUMMER SPANISH EXCHANGE STUDENT PROGRAM (STEP)

Spanish teenagers end of June to mid-July

A group of Spanish teens arrives the end of June each summer, staying for three and a half weeks in southern Vermont, western Massachusetts and western New Hampshire.  

NEW STUDENT APPLICATIONS ARE STARTING TO COME IN!  See the list for quick information, and click on each individual's name to see complete applications and their photos!  

*If you decide you'd like to host a specific student, send Jill an email, telling her the name of the student.  Then,make sure you've completed a host application.  (If you've hosted in the past, please fill out a new one if there are substantial changes.  Otherwise, you can update a previous application.) 

FEMALES

Ainhoa Liu, 17. Likes ballet and surfin... listening to music, shopping, cooking and animals! Comes from a town near the beach and enjoys the water. Has spent a school year in England and is excited about coming to our area.

WHAT DO HOST FAMILIES PROVIDE? Host families provide housing and food.  The students come with health insurance and spending money--and enthusiasm!  Their goal is to be immersed in our culture and the English language, and they happily join in all your family's activities. The program plans two trips (Six Flags and Boston) that all the students usually attend--and host families and friends can also join in! Other fun gatherings are all optional. 

If you are interested in hosting, fill out the application in the link below! Student profiles usually start arriving in March! Get your host family application in now and be ready to choose!

SAMPLE ACADEMIC YEAR STUDENTS FROM PAX

Here are some 2019-2020 students--who specifically want to come into the Northeast!  (These are all from SPAIN--but scroll down to see some other students from other countries.) Click on the names of them, to see their information--and to read their "dear family" letters!

SPAIN

GONZALO: Male. 14. Plays soccer, basketball and tennis. Likes listening to pop music, travelling, movies, paddling, volunteering, and video games. He's an only child.  He loves sports, and wants to join a team in the US, especially basketball.  Wants to be a sports physiotherapist after high school.  Not a picky eater and open to trying everything! 

ROCIO. Female. 15. Plays basketball, likes to ski downhill, run cross country and cook. Also likes fashion and interior design, directing and musical theater.  Sings in a choir.  Has two older siblings in college.  Favorite sport is basketball.  Loves music and has just started learning piano and ukulele. 

JAIME: Male. 16. Plays soccer and basketball. Goes cycling, mountain biking, horseback riding and cross country running. Enjoys movies, listening to pop music, cooking, watching sports, writing, playing video games, debate, 3-D design, and photography.  Loves "helping people" and never misses a chance to be a part of a school volunteer group.  Also loves horses and goes riding every weekend with his father and brother.  Describes his best quality as being an extrovert, and being a "kind and good person". 

ELENA.  Female. 15. Enjoys swimming, dance, outdoor education, social activities, photography, painting/drawing, art, guitar playing, tennis and volleyball.   Has a younger brother, age 11.  Her favorite sport is swimming.  She is a member of student council, and enjoys helping her classmates.  Once a week, she participates in a "group of life":  a group of friends supported by a teacher who gather and reflect on ways to improve as a person. 

ARIEL.  Male.  14.  Likes boxing, swimming, climbing, video games, astronomy, electronic music and photography.  He has a younger brother, age 11.  He does NOT have pets at home--but has always wanted a cat or a dog.  (A perfect placement for a pet-oriented family!)  Math and science-oriented, wants to study naval engineering after high school.  Describes himself as "very responsible" in school, and has studied abroad for a one month before, in England. 

JORGE. Male. 15. Likes basketball, soccer, swimming, tennis, playing musical instruments, listening to pop music, movies, public speaking, debate, photography and video games. His mom and dad are engineers.  He has a twin brother who is also participating in the PAX program (but who won't be placed nearby), and a younger sister.  He is close with his family and siblings--and loves little kids.  He spends time playing with and taking care of his little cousins.  He views the exchange experience as a "great opportunity to grow, not only at an academic level, but also at a personal level."  Lives in a big city, and is particularly excited for the opportunity to enjoy more nature. 

IGNACIO. Male. 15. Enjoys American football, also enjoys flag football, soccer, table tennis, watching sports, reading and fishing.  His parents are divorced, and he has a younger brother who is 11 and a sister who is 12.  Along with his family, he is an active volunteer (UNICEF, reforestation volunteering, participated in a play for children).  He describes himself as polite, responsible, hardworking (always helping around the house).  He also likes Mark Twain books! 

JANOC.  Male.  15.  Likes basketball, skateboarding, photography.  Has younger brother who is 12.  Loves animals and has three dogs, four turtles and two chickens at home.  Enjoys outdoor activities like kayaking, surfing, climbing, hiking, mountain biking and snowboarding.  Describes himself as "positive and happy person" and "very curious".  

ALVARO. Male. 15. Likes ice skating, swimming, tennis, drama club, acting and debate.  He has a a brother who is 18 and a sister who is 19.  He says that he is "a funny person" and "open minded".  He's always wanted to have pets, but it has not been possible.  

HECTOR. Male. 15. Likes basketball, soccer, American football, debate, movies, watching sports, architecture, television production, guitar playing and paddling. Allergic to fruit, walnuts, pinions and chestnuts. He is active, athletic and loves traveling and skiing.  He wants to be a on a team in America, and to know what prom and homecoming are like! 

NACHO. Male. 16. Likes basketball, judo, swimming, playing the guitar, computers, photography and painting.  His parents both work with car repair.  He has a younger sister, age 12.  He would like to study cyber security after high school.  One of his biggest dreams is to study at MIT University.

PABLO.  Male, 15.  Likes basketball, cycling, swimming, watching sports, video games, listening to pop music, films and videos, television production, graphic design, musical instruments.  He loves basketball and is a huge fan of the NBA.  Also particularly enjoys skiing, and going out into the countryside.  Has a twin brother who will also be in the USA at the same time, although not placed close together.

IGNACIO.  Male, 16.  He likes basketball, downhill skiing, American football, rock band, drums, video games, electronic music, television production, school sports.  He also is a boy scout.  He has a younger brother, age 12.  He is allergic to cats and horses.  He likes dogs, and has a Yorkshire Terrier at home.  He has always loved music, and plays the drums.  He practices basketball eight hours per week, and spend two hours at games on the weekends.

MARIU.  Female, 16.  She likes swimming, choir, scouting, movies, photography, film and videos.  Her mother is a novelist, and her father was a publisher (like her grandfather).  Her main hobby is photography, likes to write, and is learning to play the guitar.  Describes herself as someone who "loves letting her imagination flow" and as very extroverted. 

ISABEL.  Female, 15.  She likes playing piano, playing volleyball, surfing, downhill skiing, ballet, dance, yoga.  Her mom is a journalist, and her dad is a businessman.  She is the youngest of three, older brother is 18 and sister is 20. She is interested in psychology, loves Harry Potter books, and would like to be in a family with dogs and/or other animals.

SARA.  Female, 15.  She likes modern dance, band, television/video/DVDs, movies, cooperation at school, and the piano.  Her dad is a telecommunication engineer, and her mom is an account executive.  She is an only child.  She loves music and has played the piano for 10 years.  She also has a background in rhythmic gymnastics.

Interested in another country?  Already in the database, as of January 29, 2019, there are students from Austria, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Korea,  Mexico, Spain... with more coming in all the time.  Here are a few applications who are also looking for homes:

GERMANY

KIM.  Female, 16.  She says her family is "ice hockey CRAZY", and is really excited about playing here in the USA.  Also likes to run and take photos.  Family includes a brother, and she's from a small town at home, too. 

BELGIUM

ESTELLE.   Female, 18 . She likes downhill skiing, scouting, school clubs, drawing, working with metal and screen printing, and movies.  Her mom is a teacher and her dad is a gardener, and she has two brothers, 20 and 11. She thinks her "worst default is that I am a bit too much talkative!"

ETAN.  Male, 18.  He likes swimming, reading current events, cooking and movies.  His mom and dad own a restaurant, and he has an older sister--and a nephew he adores!  He is very excited to meet his new host family!

TIM.  Male, 18.  He loves football and soccer, and is currently trying his hand at being a referee. His mom is a teacher, his dad a manager, and he has a brother age 17.  He has a self-described passion for history, particularly World War I and II.  He loves dogs and playing with his border collie, Falco.  He also says that he is as comfortable "in the water as on land" (although Falco does not share his passion for the water!). He would especially like to go to Massachusetts. 

ITALY

GIULIA.  Female, 17.  She likes artistic gymnastics, reading, movies, and spending a lot of time with her family.  She has lived abroad in both Brazil and Sweden, and is excited about coming next to the USA.  She enjoys her science and math classes--and loves buying new makeup and nail polish.

ILARIA.  Female, 17.  She enjoys reading, synchronized swimming, alpine skiing, climbing, listening to pop music and art.  She has twin older brothers who are 18, and a younger sister who is 14.  Her favorite subjects are human sciences and philosophy.  She likes to volunteer with children, too.

This is just a sample of the 700-1000 students that the PAX program brings into the USA annually.  There are so many students to choose from--all highly qualified with great English abilities, strong desires to live in the USA for a year, and tons of enthusiasm! As soon as you complete the application process, you can scroll through more.  Or, if you see a student you really want to host, give us a shout now! 

DID YOU KNOW? 

  • You can host if you are a family with children--or without.  You can host if you're a single mom or dad, too!
  • If you need to travel, there are host families who will take your student temporarily!
  • If things do not work out, and you've tried to work through it unsuccessfully, we will find another placement for the student. Life is too short for hosts & students to be unhappy!

SOME PERSONAL THOUGHTS 

Last year, my family was not going to host.  It was just going to be something that I organized, and my family was going to participate occasionally in some of the events.  But, we ended up hosting when another family couldn't do it very close to the deadline. 

I'd honestly say that hosting Jon, our "Spanish-son-for-the-summer", was easily one of the highlights.  Why? 

I loved watching all three of my kids reach out and purposely be welcoming.  One invited Jon to go fishing, another asked him to go for a walk with the dogs.  Another would seek him out for card games on a lazy summer's afternoon.  Our family remembered how much fun some of those "boring things" really are--like the simple joys of eating lunch overlooking the river or roasting marshmallows over an open fire.  Seeing our area through Jon's eyes made us realize how wonderful an area we live in.  Encouraging my children to utilize their school-learned Spanish language skills in a real way meant that now they are thinking about how useful this could be in life.  

Each family's experience is unique and no one is completely perfect.  (I would have preferred to never visit hospitals with Jon!)   But I am sure that if you can host, you, too, will be amazed at what the experience will mean for you and your family! 

Jill Stahl Tyler, Brattleboro, VT  

HOSTING CHANGES LIVES--YOURS AND THEIRS!

Eight years ago, we hosted Koldo.  This proved to be life-changing for our family.  After only a few days of having him in our home, we realized what an extraordinary experience we were having.  Since we were unable to live abroad for an extended period of time, having Koldo in our house was the next best thing. 

Our conversations covered every topic imaginable.  We enjoyed comparing life in Spain to lie in the United States.  Having him with us allowed for many of these conversations, giving our family a great understanding and respect for the Basque region of Spain. 

Koldo returned to us for three consecutive summers, followed by our son traveling to Spain to live with his family the following three summers.  To top it off, my husband and I traveled to Bilbao, Spain, to meet Koldo's family, and see this wonderful culture for ourselves.  We highly recommend that, if you have the opportunity to host a student, you seize the chance. 

Debbie Bunker, Brattleboro, VT