Study has proven that if the exchange student has intensive and positive contact with members of the host culture it will result in positive views of the exchange experience and the host culture.
By hosting an exchange student, you contribute to the student’s and your family’s personal development.
The competences you both acquire during the exchange, will stay with you long after the exchange is over.
As a host family you will be able to provide guidance and support for your exchange son or daughter while he or she is learning new competences. It is an incredible reward to see the student develop during the exchange experience and know that you were able to play a big role in this.
In the last two decades independent researches were conducted on the impact of high school exchange programs on students’ lives. The Intermundo Compendium combines this research and identifies the following intercultural and personal competences for students as a result of their participation in a high school exchange program.
- Strengthened intercultural sensitivity and intercultural competences: cultural differences and unfamiliar behaviors are better accepted and integrated into personal behaviors.
- Increased intercultural social contacts and increased knowledge of the host country.
- Increased openness to foreign cultures and decreased fear in intercultural encounters.
- When comparing attitudes of young people who stayed abroad and those who did not, it shows that stays abroad positively affect the attitude towards foreigners and are a great way to reduce prejudice.
- Youth exchanges not only reduce prejudice against foreign persons, but also reduce stereotypes that exist abroad about one’s own culture.
- During an exchange, young people will not only discover new facets of the world, but also become ambassadors of their own culture abroad.
- Many exchange students are fluent in the foreign language after their stay.
- Exchange students have an increased feeling of personal efficiency, personal responsibility, independence, self-confidence, and self-esteem.
- Exchange students are able to better accept others’ perspectives and integrate them in their thinking and their actions.
A study on the impact of the European Union's Erasmus student exchange program shows that:
- graduates with international experience are half as likely to experience long-term unemployment compared with those who have not studied or trained abroad.
- 92% of employers are looking for personality traits boosted by the program such as tolerance, confidence, problem-solving skills, curiosity, knowing one's strengths/weaknesses, and decisiveness when making a recruitment decision.
- Tests before and after exchange periods abroad reveal that Erasmus students show higher values for these personality traits compared with other students.