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Summer Work Travel: Regulation Update 62.32(b)

1 Apr

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Categories: cultural exchange

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Lately, there has been attention on the definition of the word “seasonal” as it relates to the Summer Work Travel program.  It is important to remember that job placements acceptable for the Summer Work Travel are defined as having to be either SEASONAL or TEMPORARY.  From the regulations: “Employment is of a seasonal nature when the required service is tied to a certain time of the year by an event or pattern and requires labor levels above and beyond existing worker levels.”  When asked to prove seasonality for host company placements, we are looking for data that would prove or support the fact that there are consistent months each year where staff over and above the normal labor levels are needed.  Should you have any questions regarding this regulation, please contact Laurie Moxley.


Best Selfie in America Contest Winners

1 Apr

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AAG’s motto is “We help you write your own story.” Each year over 8,000 J-1 visa holders sponsored by AAG travel to the U.S. to experience cultural exchange in a unique way. To help capture their stories, we sponsored “My Best Selfie in America” participant contest. Participants were asked to take selfies of themselves in their favorite parts of the U.S. We received some amazing photos from all over the country! Below are a few of our favorite selfies, which truly highlights how this program is really life changing and provides the opportunity for memories that will last a lifetime. Finalists were selected and posted to Facebook where AAG’s fans and participants could vote for their favorite selfie. Our big winner was Mariam with Maverick coming in second place. Congratulations to our winners, and thank you all of our participants who sent in these great photos.


1st place

Mariam: You can notice the amazing view from the Vail Mountain, while I was doing one pf the hardest sports which is snowboarding. Taken in Vail Mountain, Colorado.


2nd place

Maverick: This is my entry for the best selfie in US, this is not just a typical photo. This was taken last February 14 during the Mardi Gras Parade at the riverwalk. With us is the Queen of the Riverwalk who happens to be our General Manager. It was indeed a fun-filled experience riding the river float and giving out colorful beads to the crowd.



This selfie was taken during our hiking through the Guam jungles! We were very happy because it was an amazing adventure! Our sincere smiles can express our happiness! Guam is a wonderful piece of land! When I look at these selfie I recall our tour and It always makes me happy!

Sofiia Demina  This selfie was taken during our hiking through the Guam jungles! We were very happy because it was an amazing adventure! Our sincere smiles can express our happiness! Guam is a wonderful piece of land! When I look at these selfie I recall our tour and It always makes me happy!



So jeong kimSo Jeong Kim   have just came to the USA for 2 weeks. And first I traveled with my friends at Abbot Kenny Blvd. in Venice CA. So we took a lot pics and enjoy shopping. And I thought this pic is appeared Abbot Keeny’s sunny feeling photo with nice wall. So I’d like to show my selfie. Thanks!



Mark Louie MotongMark Louie Motong  This is my second time here in USA  so i decided to join this photo contest.A winter time here in Stockbridge Massachusetts or well know as The Berkshire when i take this Photo.. Because i believe you cannot feel the real winter when you dressed up. So i decided to take this picture without my shirt so i could tell my Friends and Family that Snow in USA are awesome.. Lol.. Im so proud of where i am right now!.. Thanks!



Mami ShiichiMami Shiichi  NY coldest now! An icicle is done for excessive cold, and the fountain of a certain favorite Bryant park freezes near a company. It is wonderful and loves winter NY, too. Here’s Daily life that I finish the training soon, but feels that winter of NY emits sparkle than before more. I seem to miss it immediately. I want everybody to know the winter of wonderful NY!



Laura RomanoLaura Romano  Taken at an island in Southwest Florida watching the sunset while paddle-boarding.




kriszelle magcalasKriszelle Magcalas  Statue of Liberty, New York. Happiest moment in life is to achieve dreams with your best friend!




Isadora BissoliIsadora Bissoli  This selfie was take at Big Sky, an amazing resort placed in Montana. My friends and I took a trip to Montana from The Summit at Snoqualmie in Washington. We had a lot of problems during the season regarding the lack of snow that unfortunately hit the west coast this year. So coming to Montana for a few days to enjoy some snowboarding with my friends was an awesome time for me. That’s for sure something I will for ever keep in my heart.  Despite all the  difficulties that we faced during our work and travel program, it is awesome to think about the friends we made and the experience we had with the american labor.

 This photo was taken in the North Shore of Oahu, one of the Hawaiian islands. I did the ultimate tandem jump, it's about 14,000 feet height. I love it because I've wanted to do it for a long time, and I think I finally chose the best place to do it!Annelise Beltrami  This photo was taken in the North Shore of Oahu, one of the Hawaiian islands. I did the ultimate tandem jump, it’s about 14,000 feet height. I love it because I’ve wanted to do it for a long time, and I think I finally chose the best place to do it!



1 Apr

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Categories: cultural exchange

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8e0c4332893f0eefbb5c06fdbef273e0Easter, which celebrates Jesus Christ’s resurrection from the dead, is Christianity’s most important holiday. It’s also linked to the Jewish Passover by much of its symbolism, as well as by its position in the calendar. Easter customs vary across the Christian world, and include sunrise services, exclaiming the Paschal greeting, clipping the church, and decorating Easter eggs, a symbol of the empty tomb. Additional customs that have become associated with Easter and are observed by both Christians and some non-Christians include traditional Easter games, egg hunting, the Easter Bunny, and Easter parades. There are also various traditional Easter foods that vary regionally.


Easter celebrated Around the World:

Argentina: Easter is quite a big event in Argentina and various traditions are carried out to mark the occasion. Holy Week continues the style of fasting introduced by Lent where all meat is avoided apart from fish. As such, traditional dishes that normally include meat are replaced by seafood and fish. Good Friday is a rather somber event when people attend their local Christian parishes to observe the Stations of the Cross or Via Crucis where Jesus is depicted during his final hours, carrying the Cross to his crucifixion. As is common to most Christian denominations, the Saturday before Easter is quiet in order to mark the mourning associated with the crucifixion and Sunday sees the start of celebrations.

Greece:  Mythology to Christianity, Greek religious practices have always been carried out with great zeal. The Greek Orthodox Church follows the Byzantine calendar, so its Easter is celebrated on a different date, which is determined by the moon’s cycle. In Greece, it is the most sacred holiday of the year marked by a full week of celebration. This year’s Orthodox Easter Sunday takes place on April 15.

In Athens, Good Friday marks the first main event where a replica of Christ’s tomb is carried through town. The most sacred of Easter events takes place the following day when people flock to the churches at midnight carrying unlit candles for the declaration of Christ’s resurrection in saying “Christos Anesti” (Christ is risen!) to which the reply is “Alithos Anesti” (He is risen indeed!). Following this announcement, they light their candles from the Holy Flame taken from Christ’s nativity cave in Jerusalem and walk through town enjoying a glorious display of fireworks, bells, and jubilation.

Easter Sunday is a day of food and more fun. After an arduous 40-day fast, the menu comprises spit-fire roast lamb and lots of colored eggs. In the Orthodox tradition, you knock eggs with your neighbor attempting to crack theirs to bring yourself good fortune.

ffc6d4b9ed0093864747d9f0eccb026bScotland: Easter in Scotland is a mostly laid-back event. The Scots do the traditional things commonly associated with Easter like attending mass and having a big meal, but they also add a bit of fun, particularly for the kids. Easter fun here is all about eggs. After they’re boiled and painted in all kinds of colors and designs, they’re taken to the park hills for rolling on Easter Sunday. While it may just sound like playtime for the kids, the event is very symbolic as it is carried out to represent the rolling away of stones on Jesus’ tomb thereby assisting in His resurrection.

Spain: In Spain, Easter is also the most important Christian event. Celebrated en mass throughout the country, Easter Week begins with Domingo de Ramas (Palm Sunday) and ends with Lunes de Pascua (Easter Monday). The country is marked by a carnival atmosphere throughout, with trumpets and drums.

Seville in Andalucia is the most famed Spanish region for Easter celebrations. It has 52 different religious brotherhoods whose members parade through the streets for the entire Holy Week manifesting the crucifixion. Processions continue for almost 24 hours culminating in the jubilation of the resurrection which is observed by floats covered in flowers, dancing in the streets and traditional sweet cakes.

Sweden: Easter in Sweden is about fun, food and festivity. It is especially good for family breaks as many of the Easter activities involve children.

b2e208fc0fa35fca1c0ba316bf887b5eHumor-filled celebrations commence on Easter Saturday with children dressing up as good witches setting the Easter mood by giving out letters and cards in return for eggs, sweets, and coins.

On Easter Sunday, food takes center stage where, in typically Nordic fashion, the feast comprises mostly fish. Edibles include different kinds of herring, a selection of smoked salmon, a hint of roast ham and various cheeses. Of course, the main attraction are eggs which are exchanged and later used in a game where participants roll them down roofing tiles to see which egg can go the furthest without breaking.



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