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19th-Century Roots

USA, Europe


19th-Century Roots


  • The spirit and organization of AFS student exchanges are deeply rooted in 19th century Europe where they were foreshadowed by the apprenticeships of the Middle Ages.
  • Volunteer ambulance drivers from two world wars brought their foreign experience home to America with them and created what is now a worldwide network of international "student exchanges" whose dynamic is based on family life with its ability to adopt "strangers"---from the newborn to the outsider.



  Friendly Adventurers

1850s Study Abroad – Art Studies in Europe

1854   Florence Nightingale in the Crimean War

1859   Henry Dunant at Solferino

1861   The U.S. Sanitary Commission

1862   A Memory of Solferino

1863   International Societies for Assistence to the War Wounded

1864   The First Geneva Convention

1865   Dr. Thomas Evans, "The American Dentist"

1870   The American Ambulance, Avenue de l'Impératrice, Paris

1895   The First Exchanges – Sorbonne

1910   The American Hospital, Neuilly-sur-Seine

1914   The American Ambulance, Lycée Pasteur, Neuilly-sur-Seine

1915   The Field Service

1917   Science & Learning in France

1920   American Field Service Fellowships for French Universities