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Exchange Programs

U.S. - Kenya Exchange Programs


The U.S. Embassy in Kenya fosters mutual understanding between Americans and Kenyans through a multitude of professional and academic exchange programs.  These highly competitive programs aim to identify current and future leaders who will go to the U.S. or come to Kenya with an open mind and commit to returning to their host country to share what they have learned with their fellow citizens.

State Alumni

Over the years, the U.S. Embassy in Kenya has sent thousands of Kenyans on U.S. government-funded exchange programs.  Alumni of these programs should register online at www.alumni.state.gov or contact Alumni Coordinator Fatuma Dubow at  USEmbassyNairobiKenyaAlumni@state.gov to join the Kenyan alumni family. 

The U.S. offers a wide range of exchange programs for a variety of profiles, including students, researchers, academics, business people, civil society activists and professionals. 

Academic Exchanges: Fulbright Programs

The flagship international educational program sponsored by the United States Government, the Fulbright Program encompasses an ever-growing number of programs.  Each of these programs is designed to "increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries..." With this goal, the Fulbright Program has provided more than 250,000 participants — chosen for their academic merit and leadership potential — with the opportunity to study and teach in each other's countries, exchange ideas, and develop joint solutions to address shared concerns.   In support of this program, U.S. Embassy Nairobi annually sponsors a number of American students and professors who work and live here in Kenya, usually in conjunction with a local Kenyan university.  The Embassy each year also sends Kenyan university graduates and academics to participate in study and teaching exchanges in the United States.

Fulbright Language Teaching Assistant Program (FLTA)

The FLTA Program provides an opportunity for young, international teachers of English to refine their teaching skills by teaching Kiswahili at a U.S. university and extend their knowledge of the cultures and customs of the United States while engaging in non-degree studies. FLTAs add an energetic and up-to-date cultural component to foreign language classes as well as to student life on U.S. campuses. This interaction makes studying and learning languages much more meaningful and real.  For more information visit the Institute of International Education site

If you are an English teacher and would like to apply, please contact KenyaFulbrightHumphrey@state.gov.

Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence Program

The Worldwide Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence Program brings visiting scholars and professionals from abroad to lecture at U.S. colleges and universities for one semester or one academic year. Fulbright Scholars-in-Residence can have a significant impact on U.S. colleges and universities.  

Fulbright Junior Staff Development (JSD) Program (Master’s degree students)

The Non-U.S. Student Program is designed to give master’s degree students, and developing professionals and artists opportunities for international experience, personal enrichment and an open exchange of ideas with citizens of other nations. For more information visit Institute of International Education.  

Fulbright Specialist Program

The Fulbright Specialists Program is designed to provide short-term academic opportunities (two to six weeks) for U.S. faculty and professionals. Fulbright Senior Specialist projects are designed to provide U.S. faculty and professionals with opportunities to collaborate with professional counterparts at non-U.S. post-secondary academic institutions on curriculum and faculty development, institutional planning and a variety of other activities. 

For more information visit Fulbright Specialist Program site.

If you would like to apply for this program on behalf of your institution, please contact us at KenyaFulbrightHumphrey@state.gov.

Community College Initiative Program

 The Community College Initiative Program enables individuals from select countries to study at community colleges in the United States to develop professional skills. Participants are recruited from historically underserved populations and may not have had opportunities for formal job training or higher   education. Most participants are in their early- to mid-twenties and many already have work experience. The program provides academic instruction in selected fields including agriculture, applied engineering, business management and administration, health professions, information technology, media, and tourism and hospitality management. Participants spend one year in the United States and may earn a vocational certificate. After completing the program, participants return home with new skills and   knowledge that enable them to contribute to the economic growth and development of their countries and societies.

Youth Exchange and Study (YES)

This U.S. Department of State-funded scholarship program provides secondary school students in selected Middle Eastern, African, and Asian countries the opportunity to live and study in the United States for a full academic year. Deadline for submitting applications:  January

This program is managed by a local Kenyan group called Organization for Intercultural Education (OFIE).  Working closely with the U.S. Embassy, we identify different secondary schools from which to recruit each year.  For more information visit the Youth Exchange and Studey Program site.

Professional Programs: Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program

The Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program brings accomplished professionals to the United States at a midpoint in their careers for a year of study and related professional experiences. The program provides a basis for establishing long-lasting productive partnerships and relationships between citizens of the United States and their professional counterparts in other countries, fostering an exchange of knowledge and mutual understanding throughout the world.  Fellowships are granted competitively to professional candidates with a commitment to public service in both the public and private sectors.  For more information visit the Institute of International Education site. If you would like to apply for this program, please forward your CV covering your education, work, and leadership experience as well as any community involvement you have had to KenyaFulbrightHumphrey@state.gov.

International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP)

The International Visitor Leadership Program brings participants to the United States from all over the world each year to meet and confer with their professional counterparts and to experience the U.S. firsthand. The visitors, who are current or potential leaders in government, politics, the media, education, and other fields, are selected by American officials overseas. More than 200 current and former heads of state, 1,500 cabinet-level ministers, and many other distinguished world leaders in government and the private sector have participated in the International Visitor Leadership Program.

The invitation to visit the U.S. under the auspices of the IVLP is extended by U.S. embassies. For that reason, individuals cannot apply to participate in the program.

Global Women’s Mentoring Partnership

FORTUNE Most Powerful Women Summit and the U.S. State Department established the Global Women’s Mentoring Partnership in May 2006. This public-private partnership places talented, emerging women leaders from all over the world in mentoring programs with FORTUNE’s Most Powerful Women Leaders.

 The three-phase program opens with an orientation session in Washington, D.C., where the participants meet with senior women in government, academia and business. The international participants are then paired with one of FORTUNE’s Most Powerful Women Leaders from companies like Time Inc., Avon, Wal-Mart, and Exxon Mobil in cities across the United States. For three weeks, American and international participants work together in mentoring relationships to share the skills and experiences necessary for strengthening women’s leadership. The program concludes in New York City, where the participants have meetings with Goldman Sachs and Solera Capital.  Mentees are nominated by the U.S. Embassy in their home country.  For additional details about the program, visit the Department of StateGlobal Women's Mentoring Parnership site.  For more information, please contact Kenya-exchanges@state.gov.

Youth Leadership Programs: Study of the U.S. Institute for Student Leaders

Study of the U.S. Institutes for Student Leaders are intensive academic programs whose purpose is to provide groups of undergraduate student leaders with a deeper understanding of the United States, while simultaneously enhancing their leadership skills.  The institute will consist of a balanced series of seminar discussions, readings, group presentations and lectures.  The coursework and classroom activities will be complemented by educational travel to other parts of the United States, local site visits, and volunteer opportunities. The institute will include an academic residency component of approximately four weeks and a domestic travel component of approximately one week that will conclude with a 3 day program in Washington, D.C.  For more information, please visit the Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs site. If you have further questions, contact Kenya-exchanges@state.gov 

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