This article includes details about
- The Sending Journey
- The Application Process
The Sending Journey
Attached is a visual aid to help understand the Sending Journey; it outlines the following steps that occur after a student goes to www.afsusa.org to Start their Journey by choosing a program and submitting their name, email address, and zip code to create an account:
- Get Started – There are 4 tasks to complete in this step:
1. About Participant
2. About Parents
3. Profile Photo + 5 more photos
4. Host Family Letter (if required)
- Applied – Applicants meet with a Study Abroad Specialist to confirm eligibility and parental support. At this stage they pay a non-refundable $200 fee to move forward.
- Next Steps – In this stage, Academic Forms, Parent Statements, Recommendation Letters, Health Info, Passport Info, and the Participation Agreement are submitted. Once a student enters Next Steps, they appear in the Interviews widget of MyAFS, and TDS and volunteers are notified that the student is ready for an interview.
- Review – In this stage, the student's application is transferred to the partner country, and a $500 deposit is made.
- Accepted – Once accepted by the partner country, the Visa process begins, the full Program Fee is paid, Host Family Info is likely received (if applicable), International and Domestic Travel is planned, and CultureTrek continues.
- Get Ready – This stage starts about 6 weeks before departure and the student's Health Form Addendum and Emergency Contact Info are collected.
- Bon Voyage – The student attends a Gateway Orientation and then departs!
Please note that there are two different deadlines for students:
Application deadline: Displayed on each program page on the AFS USA website, the application deadline will be the date by which a student must complete their ‘Get Started’ tasks. These are all tasks that can be done by the student himself or herself and do not require any 3rd party involvement.
Paperwork deadline: Displayed on each student’s application Dashboard when in the ‘Next Steps’ portal stage, the paperwork deadline is the date by which they must submit their supporting documents. These include items like the medical form and teacher recommendation.
Be sure to remind students that spots fill on a rolling basis and encourage them to complete their tasks before the deadlines.
The Application Process
Another great way to learn about the application process is to complete the Online Training module Mentoring Participants through the Application Process.
For a step-by-step guide of what the application process looks like, you can also view our guided tour. The guide covers:
- How an AFS account is first created
- How to start the application (Please note that there has been one change since this video was made. Students now pay a $200 application fee during the Applied stage and not in Next Steps.)
- The Next Steps after the student speaks to an AFS study abroad specialist to verify eligibility for their program of interest and parental approval to continue the application process and have paid a $200 non-refundable application fee.
- A final review to be sure everything is accurate and complete.