Partnership Announcement: Asia Exchange as Global Affiliate of AFS Intercultural Programs

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A Partnership for a More Connected and Peaceful World Through International Education

Asia Exchange, a Finnish-based pioneer in international education since 2007, is thrilled to unlock a new chapter of global collaboration. Proudly announcing its status as a Global Affiliate of AFS Intercultural Programs, Asia Exchange continues its mission of providing accessible, unique, and meaningful study opportunities. This AFS partnership is a strategic alliance and a significant stride toward fostering a more interconnected and harmonious world. Together, Asia Exchange and AFS are committed to shaping a world where international education catalyzes unity, understanding, and peace.

Who are AFS and Asia Exchange?

AFS Intercultural Programs is a prominent global non-profit network promoting intercultural understanding and creating a more just and peaceful world. Operating in almost 100 countries, AFS offers international exchange programs, education initiatives, volunteerism, and advocacy, empowering young people with essential global skills and a passion for positive change. Supported by over 50,000 volunteers, staff, and numerous host families, AFS comprises 55 independent, locally-led, and governed organizations worldwide. Their mission aligns with a commitment to fostering a more interconnected and harmonious world through cultural exchange and education.

Aligned with AFS’s mission, Asia Exchange has been a pioneer of international education since its inception in 2007. As the world’s largest study abroad company focusing on Asia, Asia Exchange has expanded its reach by introducing Beyond Abroad in 2020, offering study opportunities beyond the Asian continent. Facilitating the educational journey of more than 10,000 students from over 110 countries in internationally renowned universities, Asia Exchange has established partnerships with institutions in 14 countries, including South Korea, Malaysia, China, Taiwan, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Portugal, Italy, France, Ireland, Cuba, Mexico, and Costa Rica. Committed to providing affordable, unique, and meaningful study opportunities, Asia Exchange’s impressive portfolio spans semesters, full degrees, gap years, and summer schools. Consequently, Asia Exchange is contributing to the mission of fostering global education and cultural exchange. This shared dedication to international education forms the foundation of the AFS and Asia Exchange collaboration.

Harri Suominen views this partnership as a strategic move towards globalizing educational opportunities.”This partnership is more than an alliance; it’s a bridge connecting adventurous minds to life-altering educational experiences.”

Harri Suominen, President and CEO of Asia Exchange
Asia Exchange visiting the AFS office in New York:
Left to right: Tuomas Kauppinen (AE), Harri Suominen (AE), Efrem Fisher (AFS), Cindy Schoger, and Joonas Salo (AE)

Partnership of AFS and Asia Exchange for a Positive Change 

The collaboration between AFS and Asia Exchange is framed within the context of the Global Affiliates program—a prestigious status bestowed upon organizations aligned with the AFS Mission and committed to expanding the network’s impact. Each participating organization undergoes a meticulous vetting process by AFS International, ensuring its dedication to the shared vision and values for global education and student well-being. 

AFS finds the partnership with Asia Exchange particularly compelling, given its international presence and expertise in the Asian study-abroad market. Moreover, Asia Exchange’s vision resonates with AFS’s objectives. This synergistic collaboration is anticipated to enhance AFS’s offerings and broaden the spectrum of opportunities available to students worldwide. By officially becoming a Global Affiliate of AFS, Asia Exchange solidifies its commitment to a shared vision of fostering a more connected and peaceful world through international education.

Asia Exchange makes our world more connected and tolerant. The more students go abroad, the less political polarization and lack of understanding for other people there will be

Vision of Asia Exchange

Asia Exchange’s designation as a Global Affiliate is more than a symbolic gesture; it signifies a tangible commitment to AFS’s mission and a joint effort to amplify global impact. This strategic partnership, marked by the thorough vetting process conducted by AFS, underscores the gravity of the collaboration and positions Asia Exchange on the path to becoming a world leader in international education. The mutual dedication to creating meaningful educational experiences is poised to set new standards for global collaboration in intercultural understanding and education. 

Mutual Benefits for Both Parties and Students Worldwide:

The collaboration between Asia Exchange and AFS promises mutual benefits, enhancing international student opportunities. AFS, recognizing Asia Exchange’s strong global presence in higher education, anticipates enriched offerings for university students and expanded possibilities for students across the globe. At the same time, Asia Exchange reaches a milestone of becoming a change-leading study abroad provider by partnering with AFS, one of the biggest names in the industry. By combining strengths, both organizations aim to elevate the landscape of international education and contribute to building bridges of understanding across diverse cultures. Recognizing that fostering change on a global basis cannot be achieved alone, this mutual dedication to creating meaningful educational experiences for students builds a foundation for a more peaceful world. 

Finally, this partnership aims to positively impact students seeking to study abroad. With expanded opportunities, resources, and accessibility, students can benefit from a broader range of transformative experiences focusing on their well-being. 

“Our collaboration with AFS is a testament to our relentless pursuit of excellence in international education. This partnership sets new benchmarks for providing students with unparalleled access to becoming global citizens.”

Joonas Salo, Asia Exchange’s Chief Business Officer
Harri Suominen, President and CEO of Asia Exchange at the AFS office in New York

Conclusion: Asia Exchange and AFS Transforming Tomorrow’s Global Citizens

Beyond impacting individual students, this collaboration pioneers innovative, affordable, high-quality educational programs, empowering students to acquire intercultural understanding. This partnership heralds a new era, jointly nurturing the next generation of global citizens through immersive experiences across continents. Together, Asia Exchange and AFS aim to create a more connected and peaceful world through education, fostering a global community of responsible citizens with essential global skills. Beyond shaping individual students, this collaboration shapes the future of international education, contributing to a more interconnected and harmonious global society.

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