Welcome to the USA!

First 2020/21 PAX Students Arrive

We are pleased to announce that the first 2020/21 PAX exchange students have arrived in their American host communities! Patricia and Noa—both young women from Spain—are currently settling in with their host families and looking forward to their once-in-a-lifetime exchange year in the United States.

While the majority of PAX teens originally admitted for an August/September start decided—together with their parents—to cancel or defer, many did not. Just as we did not force any 2019/20 students to return to their home country in the spring, we have not prevented any suitable 2020/21 students from coming to the U.S. now. That right has remained with the students and their natural parents.

Together with our international partners, we have done everything we can to facilitate whatever students and natural parents have decided is right for them. For some of these students, this year was their only “window”—whether due to age or rules governing their schooling back home.

To be certain, the process was more difficult than in other years. Beyond the many policies and precautions we needed to implement in order to responsibly administer the program and ensure participant safety, many U.S. consulates have only recently re-opened. Flight availability and travel restrictions also continue to be obstacles.

While it's been a tall order, it's only with the help of many others that the dreams of students like Patricia and Noa have become a reality. Of course, we could not have done it without our committed team of Community Coordinators who worked tirelessly to find great families. Perhaps the biggest token of gratitude belongs to our gracious host families and high schools. Their commitment to international exchange and cross-cultural understanding has never been more clear. Indeed, their example speaks volumes.

To all who have played a part, thanks so much for your support of international exchange in general and PAX students like Patricia and Noa in particular.

—The PAX Team

Perhaps the biggest token of gratitude belongs to our gracious host families and high schools. Their commitment to international exchange and cross-cultural understanding has never been more clear. Indeed, their example speaks volumes.