3 Top Work Abroad Programs for Youth

They always say that it’s best to travel when you’re young, but how do you choose where to go or what to do when you have the whole world in front of you? Consider a work abroad program that handles the administration and assigns you to a trustworthy overseas placement where you can focus on building new skills and enjoying your time in a new country.

Here are three of the best work abroad programs for American youth:

  1. Princeton in Asia
  2. Princeton has been providing competitive fellowships to promote interchange between the East and West since the 1890s. Out of approximately 160 fellowships, the majority are granted to Princeton graduates, but fellowships are still granted yearly to stellar recent graduates with a Bachelor’s degree from any part of the United States.

    Amanda McDonald received a Princeton in Asia fellowship to teach in China after graduating from George Washington University, for example. Watch this NBC clip on her and the growing movement of youth heading abroad:

    YouTube Preview Image

    These fellowships cover the full-year of work in varying parts of Asia ranging from some well-known Asian countries, such as India, China and Malaysia, to lesser-known Asian countries, such as Kazakhstan, Laos and Timor-Leste. Most fellowships are granted for teaching English, but there are also some workplace fellowship opportunities for recent graduates of journalism, international development and business.

    You’ll need to pay a $50 application fee, $350 as an intern contribution, and the costs of airfare and transportation to get to Princeton for the interview and orientation, but the program covers the costs of the orientation program and travel insurance. Princeton in Asia also provides travel grants for those with demonstrated need and can help you defer your student loans.

  3. AgriVenture
  4. Organized by the International Agricultural Exchange Association (IAEA), AgriVenture provides you with a flexible work abroad experience in agriculture, horticulture and home management. You could find yourself working in rural Australia, Denmark, Germany, Japan, New Zealand, Norway or Sweden.

    AgriVenture offers three different program options, depending on your experience, desires and goals:

    • AgriVenture Traditional participants don’t need prior experience in the field. You’ll live with or near the host family.
    • AgriVenture Plus participants need two years of experience in the field. You’ll be furthering your career by assisting with the management side of the business.
    • AgriVenture WorkAbout participants don’t need experience in the field. You’ll start with one placement, but you’ll have the freedom to travel to and work for other hosts across the country.

    The program price ranges from around $3,500 to $6,700, depending on where you choose to go, and covers an allowance from which your lodging is deducted, airfare, travel insurance and emergency support. Apart from the experience requirements or lack thereof, you only need to be between 18 and 30 years old with a valid driver’s license.

  5. InterExchange
  6. Through this non-profit organization whose aim is to promote cross-cultural awareness, you could find yourself working overseas as an au pair or English teacher somewhere else around the world. Au pairs live with their host families and receive a weekly stipend; some programs may even provide paid vacation and extra money for education. Compensation for English teachers vary and may include lodging and a stipend or salary.

    Most program fees range from $500 to $1000 for placements of one to six months in Europe or Oceania. The Ghana placement ranges from $1,000 to $2,000 and the China placement costs around $3,500. Requirements vary depending on the country; as a minimum requirement, you need to be a young American citizen.

    InterExchange also organizes a “Work & Travel Program” to Australia or New Zealand. The $700 program fee includes assistance with obtaining a working holiday visa and thorough support onsite to help you find accommodations and a job for up to a year. You just need to be a U.S. citizen between 18 and 30 years of age with a high school diploma to apply.

What other work abroad opportunities would you recommend for American youth?

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  1. Vinny T
    Posted May 31, 2011 at 11:58 pm | Permalink

    I can’t think of a better way to get quality work and travel experience at the same time.For a modest investment, the participants of these programs can benefit immensely.Thank you Samantha for providing this invaluable information to the public

  2. Posted June 2, 2011 at 1:12 am | Permalink

    Yes! It’s so true that these are high quality programs, Vinny! =)

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