EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – International students who travel from around the world to study in El Paso need a place to stay. The organization Academic Year is looking for families in the Borderland willing to accept them into their homes.

Students from around the world travel to El Paso for one year to see the culture, learn the language and have an experience like no other. When they come they stay with local families.

Families who host them have the opportunity for their own children to be exposed to the culture of their host brother or sister.

El Paso exchange student with host brother

“All of my children are begging me to bring back another exchange student this year, it was an amazing experience they got to share their experience from their country with my kiddos, my kiddos got to learn about things they’re not exposed to here in El Paso,” said Lyda Ness-Garcia an El Paso host mother. “They became part of the family everybody was crying at the airport when they left it was very emotional.”

Students who study here learn about Borderland culture. Many are leaving behind their country, family and home to study. It’s a host families job to make them feel welcomed and at home here.

Host family meeting their exchange student at the airport.

“I only googled El Paso and I thought I thought OK it’s close to Mexico a lot of Hispanic influence,” said Max Sehwab a German Exchange Student. “I think the food is awesome and people are very outgoing and nice and I think it’s interesting that we have sort of a melting pot here.”

Host families can be either single or married. However, you must be at least 25 years old and pass a background check.

El Paso exchange students

Academic Year is still looking for host families for multiple exchange students arriving in El Paso in the weeks to come. If you are interested or would like more information you can go to Academicyear.org.