Della Wilkins and Miles Napierski from Maple Mountain High School were selected to receive full scholarships out of only 14 awarded nationally for the 2023 FCCLA’s Japanese Exchange Program. FCCLA stands for Family, Career and Community Leaders of America.
FCCLA’s Japanese Exchange Program is a scholarship opportunity for FCCLA members to travel to Japan for 6 weeks as an exchange student. This scholarship is funded by the Kikkoman Corporation and administered by Youth For Understanding USA (YFU). Each scholarship is worth $8,995.
Based on the premise that international understanding can be achieved through individuals, the Japanese Exchange program emphasizes family living as the core of the overseas learning experience. The opportunity to experience the day-to-day life of another country and its people enhances members' awareness of international issues.
Della and Miles will act as youth ambassadors and will be leaving mid-June and returning in August. Each will stay with a host family in Japan. They will be enrolled in a local Japanese high school for at least 1 week as guest students. Some of the activities that they will experience during their exchange include attending traditional tea ceremonies, practicing martial arts, and visiting local summer festivals.
Within one month of returning home, the students must provide a report and photos detailing their exchange experience to Kikkoman. Upon returning home, scholarship winners are expected to complete at least one presentation in their school or community to share their experiences and teach others about the culture in their host country.
FCCLA is a national Career and Technical Student Organization that helps young men and women become leaders and address important personal, family, work, and societal issues through Family and Consumer Sciences education. Today, more than 199,000 student members are active in over 4,900 chapters across 46 states, the District of Columbia, the American Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.