The U.S. Embassy’s Office of Exchanges and Alumni programs seeks to establish and promote enduring personal and professional ties between the people of the Republic of Korea and the United States. Exchange programs allow Koreans and Americans to form lasting relationships in areas of shared interest and concern. Bonds of friendship and mutual respect are also strengthened through alumni activities.
Professional Exchange Programs
Fulbright Commission in Korea: The governments of the U.S. and Korea support the Korean-American Educational Commission (KAEC) in its operation of the Fulbright program and other activities set by the KAEC Board. One of these programs, the Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA) program brings more than 100 Fulbright grantees each year to Korea to teach English in public schools across the country, focusing on regional areas outside of Seoul.
The International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) is a professional exchange program in which current and emerging foreign leaders in a variety of fields experience the United States firsthand and cultivate lasting relationships with their American counterparts. U.S. Embassy personnel nominate candidates for the IVLP.
IVLP on Demand provides small groups of Korean participants the opportunity to meet and confer with their professional counterparts in the United States. U.S. Embassy personnel nominate candidates for the IVLP on Demand program. Please contact the Office of Exchanges and Alumni for more information about Embassy Seoul’s exchange programs.
Student Exchange Programs
The Work, English Study, Travel Program is an innovative exchange program in which more than 3,700 university students and recent university graduates from the Republic of Korea have gone to the United States to study English, participate in internships, and travel. WEST is run by the Korean Ministry of Education with support from the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Embassy Seoul.
Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (UGRAD) provides semester and academic-year scholarships to outstanding undergraduate students from under-represented sectors in East Asia, Eurasia and Central Asia, the Near East and South Asia and the Western Hemisphere for non-degree full-time study in the United States combined with community service, and cultural enrichment.
U.S. Congress-ROK National Assembly Youth Exchange Program (CYX) is a unique program designed to broaden the perspectives of Korean and American young people on the legislative process, the history of U.S. – Korean relations, and current economic, political, and security aspects of the bilateral relationship. The program also provides the U.S. and Korean participants with firsthand experience of each other’s people and culture and creates opportunities for participants to form long-lasting personal contacts. Korean delegates are selected by members of the ROK National Assembly through a competitive application process. The American delegates are selected by members of the U.S Congress through a similar process.
The National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y) program promotes critical language learning among American youth. NSLI-Y awards merit-based scholarships to high school students for participation in summer and academic year immersion programs in locations where the eight NSLI-Y languages are spoken, Korean being one of the languages. NSLI-Y immerses participants in the cultural life of the host country, giving them formal and informal language practice.
The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program is an intensive overseas language and cultural immersion program for American students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities. Students spend eight to ten weeks abroad studying one of 15 critical languages, which includes Korean. The program includes intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences designed to promote rapid language gains.
The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program provides scholarships to American undergraduate students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad, providing them with skills critical to national security and economic prosperity. The program aims to encourage students to study and intern in a diverse array of countries and world regions. The program also encourages students to study critical need languages, which includes Korean.
Korea-U.S. Vision Association (KUVA) was organized in April 2009 and it was registered as an NGO under the auspices of the ROK’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in May 2009. KUVA is open to alumni of all USG-sponsored exchange programs. KUVA, which is apolitical, has already arranged several thematic roundtable discussions and has worked with the Embassy as a co-sponsor or grantee organization for various alumni programs. It is also able to provide networking opportunities and other professionally fulfilling activities.
Grant Support: Korean alumni of Department of State exchange programs have been awarded several of the grants offered by the Bureau of Educational Cultural Affairs. U.S. Embassy Seoul has played a vital role in supporting these projects.
If you are an alumnus of a U.S. government exchange program, please register today at the International Exchange Alumni website. Joining the alumni association allows you to extend your exchange experience by networking with other alumni, developing your career, and staying in touch with the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and the U.S. Embassy.