The New Meet the Students Tool is Live!

The New Meet the Students Tool is Live!

The new Meet the Students tool on, developed in consultation with both AFS-USA staff and volunteers, is intended as a promotional tool for potential host families. Staff and volunteers can think of it like a “student bio book”, shared to showcase the diversity and breadth of our students. Volunteers should continue to use the Placements Tool in MyAFS to (1) view available students in their area and (2) support efforts to create a positive host family/participant connection that will result in a positive exchange experience. 

It is important to note that these changes are being implemented to improve/increase the number of our hosting leads, which was identified as a priority by staff and volunteers 

The primary changes to Meet the Students are: 

  • Accessibility right within our hosting webpage: The tool will appear as a search bar at the top of the page, beneath the Become a Host button. Results will appear below the navigation bar, and visitors can easily navigate back to view the primary content of the /host webpage.  

  • Filter option changes: Category of interest only; not all the student tag options will be included 
  • No zip code search functionality: All students will appear regardless of designated placement area 
  • Students will still show even if placed, and students from other cycles may also appear* 

*This is being done to (1) showcase AFS-USA’s breadth of hosted participant home countries year-round, a key differentiating factor from other exchange organizations, and (2) create an opportunity to bring prospective host families in so they can better understand the benefits of hosting with AFS-USA. If a family is interested in a student already placed, they will be redirected to available students. 

To help understand the intention of the Meet the Students tool, it is helpful to think of it as a marketing tool to generate host family leads, as opposed to a placement tool. Since potential AFS host families will be accessing this tool year-round and the availability of participants varies widely across months due to the cyclical nature of AFS-USA’s work, we want to ensure visitors can always see the types and breadth of students hosted by AFS-USA. Volunteers are encouraged to use this tool in the following ways: 

  • Share with potential hosts who want to see types of students available to host 
  • Link to in general outreach to generate interest in AFS hosting opportunities 
  • Showcase in presentations or at events to generate leads  

To support Area Teams in their placement efforts, AFS-USA offers specific tools (Canva templates, Bios and Get to Know’s) which can be used in sharing available students to host families. Please note that Bios and Get to Know’s are also being improved to support this aspect of host family placement. 

As always, please reach out to us at with any questions, comments, or suggestions. Thank you!