With four official languages (German, French, Italian, and Romansch), Switzerland is an ideal place for international education. The country’s motto is, “Unity, yes; uniformity, no,” giving you the opportunity to discover diversity in a peaceful, collaborative environment. By living with a host family and studying at a local high school, you’ll be totally immersed in regular teenage life. This is your chance to join an international community and make Switzerland’s breathtaking landscapes and delicious food a part of your everyday routine.
Participants must be between the ages of 16 – 18,5 years old on the day of departure.
The AFS Program
After your host parents greet you with traditional hospitality, it shouldn’t be long before you feel at home in their open, friendly community. By going to a local high school, you’ll be totally immersed in a new language and customs, and what you learn during the day will be reinforced at night when you spend time with your host family. This is your chance to break out of your comfort zone and join in this diverse and ever-evolving culture.
Your high school
Switzerland has one of the top education systems in the world, and you can expect your classmates to be highly motivated and engaged students. You’ll most likely attend a Matura school, an academically competitive high school that prepares students for university studies. A typical day might start around 8 am and end around 6 pm. Most schools have classes until noon on Wednesday, leaving the rest of the day free for skiing, hiking, or spending time with your host family and friends.
If you’re in the German-speaking region, you’ll be given an online Rosetta Stone course, and you’ll be able to take an intensive language course during the first five weeks of your stay. If you’re in the French-speaking region, you should come with some existing knowledge of French, and will get some French lessons at a local level.
“Life-changing” is hard to describe, yet it’s nearly always the first thing that AFSers say when asked about their experience abroad.
“Transformed” is another one. When you return home, if you’re like most AFSers, you’ll bring with you a sense of accomplishment unlike any other. You’ll have gained maturity and independence, discovered new passions, and feel like you can do anything you set your mind to. That transformation isn’t visible only to you, though – others see it as well. AFSers gain critical skills for college and careers, ranging from language fluency to intercultural competence and critical reasoning. “Life-changing” means it’s only the beginning.
- Airport Pick-up
- Host Family Placement
- School Placement
- Individual Contact Person
- Medical Insurance
- 24/7 Emergency Support
- School Transport
- Assistance with Application Process
- Visa Application Assistance
- Pre-Departure Orientation
- Orientations during your time abroad
- Re-entry Orientation
- Global Competence Certificate
- Access to Alumni Network
- Continuous Support
- Worldwide Presence
- 70 Years Experience
- Visa and Passport Fees
- School Uniform