International Experience (iE)

209 S. Water Street Suite 102
Northfield, MN 55057
Phone: 507-301-3613; (Toll-free) 888-266-2921
Fax: 952-223-6103
Contact: Thomas-Brian Gillner, Executive Director

2020-2021 CSIET Certification Status: Full
Countries Served: Austria, Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Guatemala, Hungary, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Serbia, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, Vietnam, United States
Number of 2019-2020 Participants: 437 (401 semester or year J-1 Inbound; 36 semester or year F-1 Inbound)
Not-for-Profit Organization: Established 2002

International Experience (iE) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting intercultural education and understanding through cultural and academic programs on an individual and community level.

By opening the minds and hearts of participants and host families, iE programs help to build appreciation and respect for the similarities and differences between the citizens of the United States and exchange visitors from around the world, thus promoting international understanding through goodwill and respect for human rights across national boundaries, races, denominations, and cultures.

Participants are carefully screened and prepared for their exchange abroad in their home countries by iE staff and qualified partner organizations.  They are administered the necessary language proficiency tests and cross-cultural training to facilitate the student’s ability to integrate into their new surroundings. 

Host families submit a written application and provide references, submit a background check and are provided information to prepare them for their cross-cultural hosting experience, and participate in the selection of the student they will host in their home.  

Local coordinators interview and screen host families, conduct cross-cultural orientations, arrange social and recreational activities, and maintain contact with students, host families, and schools throughout the duration of the student’s program.  They are the direct link between iE and the families, students, schools, and communities. 

Academic Semester/Year Programs in the United States—Foreign students between 15 and 18 years of age spend five to ten months living in carefully selected volunteer U.S. host families while attending the local public or private high school.  Students are screened for academic achievement, English language proficiency, and social competence.  Orientation is provided prior to departure and upon arrival in the United States.  Placements are supervised by local coordinators and include monthly contact and reporting.  Cost to participants is $ 6,000 to $10,000, depending of the home country of the students and excluding personal expenses, insurance and transportation.