Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Program was established in October, 2002 and sponsored by ECA to provide scholarships for high school students (15-17 years) from countries with significant Muslim populations to spend up to one academic year or a semester in the U.S. Students live with host families, attend high school, engage in activities to learn about American society and values, acquire leadership skills, and help educate Americans about their countries and cultures. In 2007, YES Abroad was established to provide a similar experience for U.S. students (15-19 years) in selected YES countries.
In Malaysia, the first batch of 20 YES students left in January 2004 and Malaysia is the only country to send on semester (6 months) due to our school system where one can only depart after their SPM exams. The number of scholars has since swelled to 49 in 2010. Application criteria include commendable school grades and personal achievements, outstanding confidence, leadership qualities, possessing an active role in school and in the local community among others is a definite advantage.
YES can support students with disabilities and encourages their participation. ECA works with a separate organization to provide students with disabilities with leadership-building workshops and appropriate information and support as needed to enhance their time in the United States.
Who can apply?
17 year old Malaysians sitting for SPM or its equivalent this year. If selected, you leave in January the following year. Shortlisted candidates will be called up for a second interview in Kuala Lumpur.
What are the criteria?
Students with commendable school grades, has an active co-curriculum, a mature good leader and fine example of a young Malaysian “ambassador” representing an Islamic country. Muslims are encouraged to apply.
How can I apply?
To apply download the Preliminary Application form, fill it out and send it to us.