Los Estados Unidos son un país de inmigrantes, con una gran diversidad de gentes, culturas, música, comida y deportes por lo que el concepto de “familia tradicional estadounidense” es difícil de definir.  También posee una variedad inimaginable de climas, paisajes y geografía.  La cultura pop está en todas partes, los deportes y las noticias dominan muchas conversaciones, y las tradiciones dependen grandemente de la región, los grupos étnicos y la religión.  Es difícil generalizar acerca de lo que se puede hacer y ver en un país donde cada pueblo, suburbio o ciudad basa su imagen en atracciones, contribuciones y estilos de vida que sus habitantes consideran únicos.

Si bien el highschool es el centro de la vida adolescente en los Estados Unidos, las organizaciones comunales y religiosas también ofrecen extracurriculares (desde teatro hasta ajedrez), actividades voluntarias y programas especialmente diseñados para los jóvenes.  Los deportes colectivos hacen que muchos jóvenes se queden en el colegio después de clases para entrenar.  El fútbol americano, baloncesto, atletismo, fútbol, béisbol, natación, voleibol y los clubes de animadoras siempre están presentes.  Los partidos entre equipos colegiales atraen multitudes de todas las edades.  En los fines de semana los jóvenes van a fiestas, salen de compras o simplemente, a dar una vuelta.  Muchas familias toman el trabajo académico muy en serie (la admisión a las universidades es muy competitiva), pero también animan a los jóvenes a pasarlo bien.

People & Community

You can live anywhere throughout the U.S., though most AFSers live with families in suburban areas or small towns. There is no “typical” American host family -your host family could be African-American, Hispanic-American, Asian-American or descendants of a variety of European nationalities and ethnicities. Household rule, routines and mealtimes will differ depending on the family, so try to be open to your host family’s way of life.  In general, teenagers are expected to help prepare meals and handle other household chores. Dinner is considered the main meal of the day, though sometimes family members may eat at different times due to busy work and school schedules—and take out meals are quite common. 

A photo posted by mikocrot (@widi_miko) on Sep 9, 2016 at 6:08pm PDT

School

Procedures, schedules, required courses, very greatly from school to school. The school year lasts from August or September until May or June (typically 8 am to 3 pm), and is usually divided into two terms. At the beginning of the school year, students often meet with an advisor who helps them select the five or six classes for the term. Uniforms are not required for most public schools. 

Language

English is the main language spoken in the U.S., but many people also speak Spanish, or another language depending on their family background. Prior knowledge of English is required.

A photo posted by Lynn Rathé (@lynntjeeee) on Jun 24, 2016 at 1:30pm PDT

A photo posted by Liene Žīgure (@llliene_) on Jun 20, 2016 at 9:37pm PDT

Food

From burgers to barbecue chicken, pizza to pasta, salads to sushi—anything and everything American food these days. Ethnic foods of all flavors—Mexican, Italian, Chinese, Thai, Japanese, Greek, you name it!—can be found even in the smallest town. But don’t miss out on good old American fare like hot dogs, clam chowder or apple pie and sweet potatoes representing down home “soul food” cooking from the American south.

Let AFS guide your intercultural adventure

Go abroad with AFS to discover who you really are, make new lifetime friendships and immerse yourself in a fascinating intercultural experience.
TEEN PROGRAMS (UNDER 18 YEARS OLD)

Our learning program will prepare you for an amazing AFS intercultural experience. The program begins at your home country with a pre-departure orientation and continues with orientations and other supported learning activities and facilitated conversations will help you maximize your experience, cope the challenges of navigating a new culture and community and gain knowledge, skills, and a global understanding, throughout your time abroad, and as you return to you home country. AFS volunteers will be there to support and guide you and your host family through your learning journey abroad.

ADULT PROGRAMS (18 YEARS OR OLDER)

The Global Competence Certificate (GCC) program will support your intercultural learning experience. This state-of-the-art program prepares you to successfully navigate new cultural environments—during your AFSNext experience and long after you finish the program. Online intercultural learning modules combined with in-person sessions help you develop practical and global skills, knowledge and attitudes that employers need and mission-driven organizations believe will help achieve their social impact goals. You will receive your certification upon completion of the training program. 

Descubre los programas disponibles en Estados Unidos