Host Family Resources

Your Area Representative

Your ISE Representative will contact you and the student monthly.  You may contact your representative if questions or issues arise or request a meeting at anytime in between. Your ISE representative will also contact the school to check the progress of the student. If you or the student do not hear from your area representative, please notify ISE at 800-766-4656.

Rules & Policies

ISE programs operate in accordance with U.S. Department of State rules and policies and have been granted full listing with CSIET (The Council on Standards for International Educational Travel.) Learn more about important program policies, requirements, and restrictions here.

What to Expect

From arrival to departure, a lot goes into a cultural exchange program. Take a closer look at how the exchange process works, and what to expect at each phase as a host family for an ISE exchange student.

Host Family Handbook

Access the PDF version of the ISE Host Family Handbook here. In this handbook, you’ll find rules, timelines, contacts, and other important program information.

Join Our Host Family Community!

Connect with host families across the country by joining our Facebook group!

Student Handbook

Access the ISE Student Handbook here. In this handbook, you’ll find rules, timelines, contacts, and other important program information about studying abroad in the USA.

Contact Us

Questions? Speak to a local representative to learn more about our cultural exchange program and how you can get involved. Complete our contact form to get in touch.

D.O.S. Host Family Letter

Download the Department of State Host Family Welcome Letter.

D.O.S. Program Regulations

Download the Department of State High School Program Regulations.


Some countries require a process called Convalidation, which allows exchange students to receive credit in their home countries for the academic courses they take while in the US.

Student Advisory Letter

Download the United States Department of State Student Advisory Letter.

Student Insurance

Be prepared! Register your student travel insurance and find a local provider. Go to the website http://www.esecutive.com/MyInsuranceto log-in and view your information.  Be sure to print out your insurance ID card to bring with you to any healthcare provider.

Host Family Resources & Helpful Tips

Here are some helpful articles for our host families.

International student missing home 5 Ways to Help Your Student Overcome Homesickness Helping your student adapt to and embrace American culture often means tackling these feelings of homesickness head on, even when a student is reluctant to admit that they miss home. Below are 5 tried-and-tested tips for helping your exchange student overcome homesickness. Read More Thanksgiving table with exchange student A Seat at the Table: 5 Thanksgiving Traditions to Share with Your Student What are the types of experiences international students look forward to, and how can your family help your student experience the best of Thanksgiving this year? Better yet, how can you include their own culture in this year’s festivities? Consider making these Thanksgiving traditions a priority this year! Read More Exchange student with backpack Can I Get Paid to Host an Exchange Student? — J1 vs F1 Exchange Programs Each year, thousands of international students travel to the US to experience American culture and academics on J1 and F1 visas. J1 and F1 visa programs all serve a similar purpose: to connect people and cultures from around the world. Read More What exchange students want to tell their host family Dear Host Family: What Exchange Students Want Host Families to Know Many exchange students will go for weeks and even months before saying what’s really on their mind — and sometimes, they’ll never completely divulge their innermost hopes and fears. In order to help host families decode what’s really going on with their exchange students, we’ve gathered some of the most common things exchange students want their host families to know. Read More hosting an exchange student, picking up student at airport What to Expect and Helpful Tips for Hosting an Exchange Student If you have ever considering hosting an exchange student, here are some details about what to expect, as well as some helpful tips and information to keep in mind leading up to the first day he or she arrives in your home. Read More ise-cultural-exchange-blog Bridging the Gap: How Cultural Exchange Continues After Programs End ut in the case of many foreign students and host families, the end of an exchange semester or year is certainly not the end of the experience as a whole. More often than not, it’s simply the beginning of a lasting connection that grows, changes and deepens over years and sometimes decades. These are just some of the many ways that cultural exchange continues after programs end. Read More Exchange student peace sign Should You Host Another Exchange Student? 5 Reasons Families Host Again and Again So why do they decide to continue to host after their first experience? Should you welcome another student into your home? These are just some of the reasons veteran ISE host families have chosen to host again and again — and tips for inviting another student into your home. Read More


Global friendship starts with local action. Volunteer to host a student today!


Change the world, one family at a time. Apply to become an ISE Area Representative!


Explore a new culture and experience a new way of life. Become an exchange student!