The Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, provides scholarships for high school students (14-16 years old) to spend one academic year in the United States. The program is crucial for expanding communication between the peoples of the United States and Lebanon to promote mutual understanding and respect. Students live with host families, attend high school, and engage in activities to learn about American society and values, acquire leadership skills, and help educate Americans about Lebanese culture.
The program supports students with disabilities and encourages their participation.
From 2003 to the present, thousands of students have participated in the YES program. During the coming academic year, approximately 882 students will join the program from: Albania, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Egypt, Gaza, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Israel (Arab Communities), Jordan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kuwait, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mali, Morocco, Mozambique, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Suriname, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, and West Bank.
In Lebanon, 534 students from all regions of the country have already participated since 2003.
Upon their return, the students will apply their leadership skills in their home countries. In fact, alumni groups have formed and are involved with many community service activities including clothing drives, mentoring younger children, teaching English, immunization drives, and much more.
To be eligible to participate in the YES program, a student must:
- Be a Lebanese citizen or a long-term Palestinian resident in Lebanon
- Be currently enrolled in the Brevet or 1st secondary class of the Lebanese baccalaureate program or in the 9th or 10th grade of the high school program
- Have a birth date between August 1, 2004 and August 1, 2006
- Demonstrate maturity, good character, scholastic aptitude, flexibility and adaptability
- Have a minimum of “B” average or 12/20 for the past three years (with no failing grades)
- Have strong English language ability: Minimum “B” average or 12/20 in English for the past three years
- Agree to attend classes in the U.S. as full-time students and maintain at least a “C” average in a U.S. high school or 10/20 in the U.S.
- Demonstrate willingness to participate in the American host family’s daily life
- Not have previously attended high school for a semester or academic year in the United States
- Not be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident (green card holder).
How to apply:
- Click here to fill the PDF application (382kb). Incomplete applications will NOT be considered.
- Provide official school grades for the last three years (preferably in English).
- Provide two current passport-sized photo.
- Provide a copy of Lebanese or residency ID
Applicants can submit the application online to email@example.com, deliver it in person to AMIDEAST, or mail the application to the following address:
Kennedy-Lugar YES Program
PO BOX 11-2190
Beirut 1107 2100
**Applications must be submitted no later than Friday, November 15, 2019**
Selected students will sit for an English test. Final selection will be based on the application, grades, essays, English proficiency test, and group and individual interviews conducted by a local review panel.
YES Program Specialist at AMIDEAST: Leen Al Yaman
Street Address: Bazerkan Building (Next to the Parliament), Nijmeh Square, Beirut Central District, Beirut
Mailing Address: PO Box 11-2190 Riad El Solh, Beirut 1107 2100
Phone: 961-1-989901 ext 163
Office Hours: Monday–Thursday: 8:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; Friday: 8:00 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
AMIDEAST administers the Kennedy-Lugar YES program as part of a consortium headed by American Councils and includes AFS Intercultural Programs, iEARN, and Iowa Resource for International Service.
Major expenses such as airfare, room and board, and pocket money will be paid by the YES scholarship.
For more information, please visit: