“The Sister Cities of Delray Beach program has taught me to disregard my cultural assumptions in light of something much bigger: worldwide cultural understanding and unification. I will carry the experiences and the love I received from Japan with me wherever I go.”Megan O’Connor, 2018
In 1999, Sister Cities of Delray Beach sent its first group of high school students to Miyazu, Japan to act as youth ambassadors between our cities. Since then, a group of student ambassadors from Delray Beach has visited Miyazu every two years to continue the exchange of cultural understanding and friendship. Miyazu sends a group of their own student ambassadors to Delray Beach every few years as well.
Every two years, our selection committee vigorously interviews freshman and sophomore high school students who either attend school in or reside in Delray Beach, and hand-picks five to seven of the candidates to be our student ambassadors for the next two-year period. Once selected, the students spend the next year preparing for the exchange with weekly Japanese language and culture lessons, teambuilding activities, and fundraising. The weeklong trip to Japan consists of a 4-day homestay with a Miyazu student paired based on similar interests, where they will tour with the family and attend school with the student, and group touring of the ancient capital of Japan, Kyoto. Once returned, the students formally present about their exchange to local schools and businesses, thus educating the community about the importance of our program and cultural exchange.
Please refer back to this page or follow us on Instagram and Facebook for announcements as to when the next application period opens.