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Description of Exchange Program

The sister city affiliation between Los Angeles and Nagoya (Japan's fourth largest city) began in 1959 and was the first sister city affiliation for either of these cities.  A program of student exchange visits between the sister cities started in 1960 when a group of Japanese students visited the Los Angeles area.  Reciprocal visits have continued since that time.  This year marks the 29th time that Los Angeles will send high school students to Nagoya under the sponsorship of LANSCA.


The summer program is planned for approximately three weeks starting around July 7 this summer (the exact date is not yet fixed).  Four student ambassadors will be accompanied by a chaperone (typically an educator from a Los Angeles area school) and will live in the homes of Nagoya families for the first two weeks.  But, this is not just another homestay program.  During those two weeks you will attend a local high school, wearing a Japanese student uniform, attending classes, and participating in after‑school activities such as sports and student clubs.  There will also be instruction in the Japanese language, visits to the historical and cultural sights of Nagoya, appearances at various social functions, and time to work on a project entitled "Nagoya Through My Eyes" to be submitted to LANSCA upon your return to Los Angeles.  Following your two-week stay in Nagoya, you will spend approximately one week touring the other parts of Japan: Tokyo, Kyoto, Hiroshima, and so forth.

Application Deadline Extended to April 17 

Eligible Students

Eligible Students

Student candidates for this program must be currently in the 10th grade and will be juniors in September. 

Student candidates for this program must be currently in the 10th grade and will be juniors in September.  Under only exceptional circumstances will LANSCA consider a student from the 9th or 11th grade, upon a showing of the exceptional qualities of the candidate and the absence of equally qualified students in the 10th grade.

Cost of Program

Costs of Program

LANSCA will provide, at no cost to you, air transportation to and from Nagoya and transportation/lodging while touring Japan. 


LANSCA will arrange, through its counterpart in Nagoya, the homes in which you will stay while in Japan.  The City of Nagoya and the host families will take care of your uniforms, most meals, transportation, and most daily living expenses while in Nagoya.


You must pay the expense of obtaining a passport, pocket money while in Japan, some inexpensive courtesy gifts for your Japanese hosts, and the cost of your meals while on the one-week tour, souvenirs, and the materials required to complete your project.


It is important that you understand that the funds for this program are not derived from the City of Los Angeles but instead are raised through the donations of private sponsors and the fund-raising activities of our volunteer members.  LANSCA is interested in promoting worthwhile exchanges between Los Angeles and Nagoya and expects that all students who participate in its exchange program will make a sincere effort to use this trip to further their education and promote goodwill between the peoples of Los Angeles and Nagoya.  It is also our hope that this trip will stimulate you to pursue studies in Japanese language and culture and to involve yourself in the future in the development of relations between Japan and the United States.

Program Components

Program Timeline / Components



  • DEADLINE: Monday, April 17, 2023 – Chaperone and Students




  • In-Person Interviews (Finalists)

  • Candidates are limited to the boundaries of the City of Los Angeles, LAUSD School District Boundaries



TIME FRAME: MAY20232019 – JULY 2023

  • Orientation

  • Cultural Workshops (Japanese Conversational Skills 101; Japanese Cultural Etiquette and Norms 101, etc.)




  • Travel Dates (TBD)

  • WEEK 1- Students Ambassadors and Chaperone arrive in Nagoya. Have a Home Stay with 5 different Japanese Families that have graciously accepted to host a student each.  

    • Student Ambassadors will experience attending Japanese schools and classrooms all week. ​

    • The chaperone will visit different High schools and learn about the Japanese educational system. 

  • WEEK 2- Students Ambassadors and Chaperone Homestay with Same Japanese Family

    • Both students and chaperons will visit different Nagoya tourist attractions. ​​

    • Attend  City of Nagoya official events including cultural exchange and city official meet and greet. ​

  • WEEK 3- Student Ambassadors and Chaperone experience a "Japan through My Eyes" Tour

    • They will visit Nagoya and various other cities while riding the Shinkansen train.

    • Accommodations include various hotels in different cities. 




  • Participate in Nisei Week Parade (Little Tokyo, Los Angeles)







Selection of Candidates

Selection of Candidates 

Each candidate must prepare an on-line application. 


Your application must be submitted no later than MONDAY, APROL 10, 2023 – Chaperone and Students and will form the basis for the preliminary review of candidates.  We do not expect you to have thought out the proposed project completely.  Instead, the proposed project need be described in only general terms.  Nevertheless, we do expect you to have some definite, even if general ideas, for your project.  We will probably reject your application if we cannot understand the objective of your project and cannot see how it will be achieved.


You should try in your application to address the following general criteria, which will be evaluated with priority points:


(1) Likelihood of Benefiting From the Program:


Highlight the qualities in your background, personality, academic experience, etc. which indicate that living in a foreign country is likely to contribute to your development and that you are likely to pursue over a longer term interests in Japan.  Mere curiosity about Japan or a desire to visit a foreign country or a search for your "roots" in Japan is not sufficient.


(2) Cultural Studies:


Show some demonstrated interest in foreign language or cultural study.  Prior study of Japanese language or culture is not a requirement, though it would be considered favorably.


(3) Personal Qualities: 


Add information, which shows adaptability, maturity, and good judgment in dealing with the unfamiliar.  These are important personal attributes in making the summer a success.  You must be able to get along well in a group and handle situations beyond your everyday experience and must be able to act on your own and deal with pressure.  In the past our students have been interviewed by television news stations and were constantly put before the public eye.  Also of importance are the personal qualities of friendliness, patience and inquisitiveness.  Clearly, you will be viewed as an unofficial representative of our city and nation and must be willing to act accordingly.


(4) Talent: 


It is very likely that you will be required to make a brief talk about yourself on several occasions while in Nagoya; experience with public speaking is desirable.  If you have a musical or other entertainment talent, your hosts will encourage you to perform.  You should be prepared to do so.


(5) Community Leadership: 


As a Student Ambassador representing LANSCA, we look for student leaders that will be able to outreach to City Hall officials about the student exchange experience.  Evidence or potential to network in the community is desired.


(6) Proposed Project:


Create an original and interesting project proposal.

Project: "Nagoya Through My Eyes"

The LANSCA Student Exchange Program is not a sightseeing junket; thought there will be ample opportunity to see the sights of Japan.  Instead, it is intended to be an educational experience, and central to this experience is the project "Nagoya Through My Eyes."  The purpose of the project is for you to focus your attention on one aspect of life in Nagoya and thereby experience some aspect of life in Japan in depth.


Each student must undertake a project while in Nagoya and present the results of this project to LANSCA upon return to Los Angeles.  The title of the project, "Nagoya Through My Eyes,” reflects its theme: the study of some aspect of life in Nagoya.  You are free to choose the aspect to be studied and also the format in which the project is to be presented.  LANSCA has no preconceived topics for these projects.  To the contrary, LANSCA will evaluate a candidate in part on the imagination and creativity in selecting a topic and format.  In creating your project you should consider (1) what you can do in Nagoya that will help you to advance your existing interests or grow into new areas and (2) what can you offer to the members of LANSCA upon your return which will give them an interesting insight into life in the City of Nagoya.


Examples of conceivable (not required or necessarily recommended) subjects would be traditional Japanese techniques for making pottery, comparison of city elections in Los Angeles and Nagoya, use of computers in Nagoya schools, unique architectural works in Nagoya, a day in the life of "Mrs. Suzuki", retail shop management in large department stores, attitudes of Japanese high school students towards the military, environmental concerns of the harbor in Los Angeles and Nagoya and so forth.  Examples of project formats could include film interviews, photographic displays, ceramic wares made through traditional techniques, sound recordings of temple bells, water color renditions of street life, written papers, computer print-outs, performing a dance or piece of music learned in Nagoya, and so forth.  It's up to you.  Let your imagination go.  However, remember.  LANSCA is looking for creative projects that can actually be done, not simply "way out" projects. Focus your thinking and narrow your goals.


You will not be left on your own on this project.  Prior to departure LANSCA members will work with you to shape the project into a workable form.  We will offer suggestions as to how best to go about completing it.  One of the principal functions of the chaperone is to help you with your project. LANSCA will alert the Nagoya city officials to the kinds of projects, which you intend to pursue in order to arrange for the necessary visits and assistance.  In short, we will help in every we can to help you succeed.


One of the challenges of this program is to design a project, which can be completed within the time available.  You will have two weeks in Nagoya to work on this project but remember: during this period there will also be demand on your time for sight-seeing, social functions, and so forth.  Set realistic goals.


You are expected to have completed your project in time for presentation to LANSCA at a dinner function to be held sometime in late August or early September.  Thus, we would expect that you would probably spend your time in Japan gathering the materials for the project, to be put in final form upon return.  Also, outreach to City Hall representatives will take place when Student Ambassadors return.

Additional Notes


Your application must be accompanied by one letters of recommendation: one from your school administrator,  counselor, a teacher or adult who is familiar with you and your studies, activities, and interests.  The most helpful recommendation letters will address the first three points noted above (give a copy of these to the person writing the recommendation letter).

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