International Education Week 2016: Empowerment can be Found Abroad


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Image courtesy of the U.S. Department of State

Here at InterExchange, we believe that empowerment can be found abroad. Time and again, we hear from our international exchange participants - both Americans overseas and international participants in the U.S. - that by far the most personal growth they’ve experienced has happened during experiences outside their own countries and comfort zones.

Responsibility. Independence. Motivation. Adaptation. Cooperation. Personal growth. Whether as interns, au pairs, teachers, summer work travel students, or camp counselors, our participants use words like these when they describe the impact international exchange has had on them. Our participants tell us that while abroad, they gained the strength and skills to become better professionals, better people, better global citizens - and better versions of themselves. Or, as one au pair host mom so memorably phrased it: “They blossom into confident, strong, proactive forces to be reckoned with.”

Empowering our participants to be successful in their studies and careers is a key goal of all InterExchange programs. We’re happy to join the Departments of State and Education to celebrate this year’s International Education Week (IEW), November 14th through 18th, a worldwide effort to promote abroad experiences for all. The theme of this year’s IEW is empowerment, so all week we’ll be featuring stories and experiences from InterExchange that illustrate how personal and professional empowerment is a regular feature of international exchange programs.

Follow InterExchange on social media at #IEXculture and #IEW2016 to hear inspiring stories of transformation and empowerment. And share your story as well! Celebrate International Education Week yourself by telling how your own international exchange experience has shaped your life and career.

Mark Overmann Mark Overmann

After studying in France and teaching in China, Mark was hooked on cultural exchange. He's worked in the field of international education and exchange for 15 years, and is InterExchange's Vice President of External Affairs.

U.S. Department of State-Designated J-1 Visa Sponsor
Alliance for International Exchange
Exclusive partner of the Erasmus Student Network for J-1 Visa sponsorship of internships in the U.S.
European-American Chamber of Commerce New York
Generation Study Abroad
Global Ties U.S.
International Au Pair Association
WYSE Travel Confederation