High School

Bloomington-Normal To Asahikawa

Congratulation to Kaylee Contreras-Diaz, 2020-2021 High School Exchange Student to Asahikawa!!

Kaylee, pictured with her mother Josefina Contreras-Diaz and father Rene Contreras, is currently a sophomore at Bloomington High School. She will spend his senior year in Asahikawa.

The High School Exchange Program is among the premier programs sponsored by the committee. Since 1968 Bloomington/Normal high school students have studied for 10 months in Asahikawa as goodwill ambassadors, living with host families, and attending school. This scholarship award includes transportation to and from Japan, living costs, high school tuition and fees, and a monthly stipend.

The selected student typically leaves for Asahikawa in early August and returns to Bloomington/Normal in June the following year. While in Asahikawa, the student will attend high school, live with host families, and attend Asahikawa Sister Cities Committee events. The student will have regular contact with officials in the International Affairs Office at Asahikawa's City Hall and the Sister Cities Committee.

The selected student is required to attend a series of lessons in Japanese language and culture from the time of selection until departure to Japan. The committee will also help the student complete and acquire the needed travel documents.

The student is required to send a report every month back to Bloomington-Normal Sister Cities Committee. After their return, exchange students are often called upon to accompany the Sister Cities Committee members at speaking engagements in Bloomington-Normal and to serve as "goodwill ambassadors" for the Sister Cities program.

Program Rules

This program has high expectations for the students we send to Asahikawa. These students represent Bloomington/Normal and the United States. Students and parents interested in participating should review the rules from our committee and the Asahikawa Sister Cities Committee.

Bloomington-Normal Committee Rules

Asahikawa Committee Rules

Application Information

The high school application and selection process for the 2020-21 exchange student scholarship has ended. Information will be posted here about the 2021-2022 exchange information.

Download application here.

If you have any questions, please contact Noha Shawki at noha.shawki@bnsistercities.org or Darren Sampson at darren.sampson@bnsistercities.org.

Student Reports

Mitchell Ratcliff, 2017

Nicholas Modine, 2016

Lauren Laine, 2015

Lexie Seward, 2014

Anna Sekiguchi, 2013

Kylie Eagles, 2012

Kae Mason, 2012

Christopher (CJ) Clark, 2010

Alejandro Montesdeoca, 2009

Chris Nobre, 2008

Amanda Poore, 2007

Donnie Chang, 2006

Patrick Carmody, 2004

Danielle Strle, 1998

From Asahikawa to Bloomington-Normal

Each year we host one high school exchange student from August to June. The student will stay with several host families and attend a local high school. The student receives a small monthly stipend from the committee to help offset the cost of minor expenses.

Current Exchange Student

2019-2020 exchange student is Himeno Yamazaki. She is attending Bloomington High School.

2018-19 exchange student from B/N, Asia, and Himeno at Labor Day Parade.

Student Reports

Tommy (Toshimitsu) Uede, 1968

Kana Oikubo, 2013