The Global Languages Exchange Program provide Albuquerque Academy students and their international counterparts with an authentic opportunity to live and study in a host country. These two- or three-week exchanges allow students in grades 7 through 12 to move beyond the passive observation (tourism) of a different culture to engage actively in the classroom, school, family, and community life of a host country.
As part of the Global Languages Program, partnerships have been established with schools in China, Ecuador, France, Germany, Japan, and Mexico. Over the past 14 years, these partnerships have allowed dozens of Academy students studying Arabic, French, German, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, Russian, and Spanish the opportunity to participate in authentic linguistic and cultural exchanges. Opportunities for those studying Portuguese are currently being negotiated.
Through these exchanges students gain profound experiential learning opportunities, deepening both their linguistic and cultural knowledge and understanding of a host country, and broadening their horizons as they embrace global citizenship.
For more information about the Global Languages Exchange program, contact:
Rolando Villegas, Director (505-858-8847)
Maria Fer Maldonado, Coordinator (505-828-3144)
Donna Hsu, AAPA Volunteer
Amy Kiuchi, AAPA Volunteer
Host an Exchange Student
This is a great opportunity to get to know a student from another country, and to have them become part of your family for two or three weeks. Discuss your interest with your family, and look at the information for Host Families on this website. With your parents or guardians, please fill out the online application to host.
Hosting Opportunities for 2019-20
October 2019: Japan and Guadalajara
February 2020: France
Be an Academic Host for an Exchange Student
Students also have the opportunity to help an exchange student during the school day by choosing to be an academic host. The exchange student will attend many of your classes, and you will accompany him or her to lunch and common time, and help him or her find the way around campus. There will also be times when the exchange student will be busy with special classes or outings which are solely for the exchange group. At the end of the school day, your exchange student will return to his or her host family.
Travel to a Partner School
Students interested in going on a particular global language exchange trip to one of the partner schools should follow the application process outlined below and become familiar with the “Funding Policies.”
Spring 2020: Chihuahua, Ecuador, Germany
Help on Campus
Participating in one of the special classes or activities for a given exchange group on campus.
Engaging in a special Common Time with partner exchange groups.
The school will organize exchange trips based on an expectation of a minimum participation of six students. If at any time, a planned exchange ends up with five or fewer participants, Albuquerque Academy reserves the right to cancel the trip. For every exchange, the goal will be to provide one chaperone for every six students, although this may vary depending on the particular nature of an exchange.
Up to this point, financial support commensurate with student’s financial assistance at the school has been provided for these exchanges. This is in line with the Academy’s mission to support access to all programs for students in the school. However, as global language exchange partnerships have expanded to include trips whose overall cost is higher, more strategic choices must be made to continue to deliver excellence across all programs.
Therefore, students will be responsible for the entire cost of their air travel, public transportation costs, and hotel stays, if applicable. There are no costs associated with the homestays, except for the suggested host appreciation gift. There are also no costs for attending the partner school or for school-sponsored trips during the exchange.
Opportunities are limited to students who are currently enrolled in the language of the host school/country, and who meet the following criteria:
- Strong academic performance and interest in the target language.
- Preference is given to students who are currently enrolled in the language of the exchange.
- Except for special circumstances (as in the case of seniors) preference will be given to students who make a commitment to continue to study the language for at least another year.
- Student must be in good standing (no excessive absences, academic deficiencies, violations of major school policies, or repeated minor violations).
- References attesting to the student’s maturity and readiness for this type of academic and cultural exchange.
- Overall academic standing at the Academy demonstrating the student’s ability to keep up with classwork that may have to be made up before or after the trip.
- Grade level preferences will not be given.
- The goal of this program is to learn the language of the country you are visiting, discover a new culture, and foster new relationships. We have found these objectives are better accomplished when Albuquerque Academy exchange students reciprocate and host a visiting exchange student. To this end, all Academy students who go on exchanges are expected to host a visiting student either before or after their trip, unless there are extenuating circumstances that would prevent a family from hosting. This reciprocation makes for a rewarding experience not just for students, but for the entire family.
Once selected, students and their parents/guardians will be invited to one or two organizational meetings in the months preceding the exchange trip. All exchanges are led by one or two faculty chaperones, determined by the size of the exchange. Orientation meetings will provide families with information about the exchange — including familiarization with the exchange program, discussion of the relevant documentation needed, and confirmation of trip dates and financial obligations. Families will learn about some of the particular cultural practices and beliefs of the host country, and have an opportunity to discuss program expectations.