Cherry blossoms, sushi, zen and the art of origami


Program Details:

  • 10, 5, or 3 month program starts in either March or August
  • Must be between the ages of 15 and 18
  • Basic Japanese language required
  • School year starts in April
  • Placed with volunteer host family
  • Application Deadlines: 12/15 for April,
    4/15 for September

Program Costs:

  • Academic Year – $9,700
  • Semester – $8,900
  • 3 months – $8,500
  • Insurance – $80/month plus NHI cost

$1000 deposit due with application
**Prices are subject to change**

Program includes:

  • Public or private high school acceptance
  • Volunteer host family placement
  • Visa support documents
  • Pre-departure orientation
  • Arrival orientation in Tokyo
  • Monitoring and supervision by local partner while in Japan
  • 24-hour emergency support

Program does not include:

  • International airfare
  • Domestic transportation within Japan
  • School textbooks, school lunches, school uniforms
  • Extracurricular expenses for clubs, sports, etc.
  • Passport/visa/resident card fees
  • Personal spending money

General Information:

Japan is situated in northeastern Asia between the North Pacific and the Sea of Japan. The area of Japan is 377,873 square kilometers, nearly equivalent to Germany and Switzerland combined or slightly smaller than California. Japan consists of four major islands, surrounded by more than 4,000 smaller islands.

Japan’s topographical features include coastlines with varied scenery, towering mountains, which are very often volcanic and twisted valleys that invite visitors into the mysterious world of nature.

Japan’s population is over 126 million. Most Japanese reside in densely populated urban areas. Japan’s capital city is Tokyo.

*Information sourced from Japan: The Official Guide

High School System:

Students who have completed lower secondary school, at about age sixteen, may choose to apply to upper secondary school. There are three types of upper secondary schools in Japan: senior high schools, colleges of technology, and special training colleges.

Senior high schools provide general, specialized and integrated courses. General courses are intended for students who hope to attend university, or for students who wish to seek employment after high school but have no particular vocational preference. Specialized courses are for students who have selected a particular vocational area of interest. Integrated courses allow a student to choose electives from both the general and specialized tracks.

Colleges of technology (Kosen colleges) typically offer a five-year program in different occupational areas.  Students can also choose to complete upper secondary vocational education after three years and go directly to the workplace. Upon graduation, a student who completes five years of technology college is considered an “associate” in his or her field.  Special training colleges offer vocational and technical education in a variety of degree programs, typically through the bachelor’s or master’s level.

Senior high school classes typically start around 8:30am and finish around 3pm. However, most students stay at school to take part in club activities or go to cram school. The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), in conjunction with university professors and the Central Council for Education, establishes broad guidelines for the content of each school subject. This means that students do not typically decide on which courses they can take and have few electives in high school.

*Information from Center on International Education Benchmarking

*Video courtesy of Japan Tourism

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