Graduate Funding Information Service

October 11, 2019

Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program

Application Deadline: November 15, 2019, 11:59pm HST

Founded in 1987, the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program has sent more than 70,000 participants from around the globe (including more than 35,800 Americans) to work in schools, boards of education, and government offices throughout Japan. What makes JET unique is that it is the only teaching exchange program managed by the government of Japan. With more than 55 countries around the world currently participating in JET, this program offers a unique cultural exchange opportunity to meet people from all around the world, living and working in Japan.

The two primary positions in the JET Program are:

  • Assistant Language Teachers (ALTs) are engaged in language instruction and make up over 90% of all JET Program participants. They are mainly assigned to local boards of education or elementary, junior high or senior high schools and carry out their duties under the guidance of language teachers’ consultants or Japanese teachers of English (JTEs) as specified by the supervisor and/or principal of the board of education and/or school.
  • Coordinators for International Relations (CIRs) are engaged in internationalization activities and translation/interpretation, and are placed in administrative offices of local authorities or related organizations. This position requires a high-degree of fluency and positions are less than 10% of all JET Program participants. Their duties are carried out as specified by the supervisor at individual contracting organizations.


For a complete list of eligibility criteria, please visit the eligibility page on the JET website. A partial list of criteria includes:


  • Be interested in Japan and be willing to deepen their knowledge and appreciation of Japan after their arrival; be motivated to participate in and initiate international exchange activities in the local community; make effort to study or continue studying the Japanese language prior to and after arriving in Japan.
  • Be a citizen of the United States by the application deadline.
    • If you are a permanent resident of the U.S. (living in the U.S. but not a U.S. citizen) you are not eligible to apply for the JET Program in the United States. Please contact the Embassy of Japan in your home country for information.
    • Those who possess dual citizenship with Japan and the U.S. must renounce their Japanese citizenship before accepting a position on the JET Program and submitting the Reply Form.  Applicants who have dual citizenship in two countries (other than Japan) may only apply in one of those countries.
  • Hold at least a Bachelor’s degree or obtain such qualifications by the designated date prior to departure.
  • Have the ability to adapt to living and working conditions in Japan, which could be significantly different from those experienced in the applicant’s home country, and be able to responsibly complete the term of appointment.
  • Have excellent standard pronunciation, rhythm, intonation in the English language and possess excellent language ability that can be applied accurately and appropriately; have voice projection skills and public speaking skills; have other standard language skills, including strong writing skills and correct grammar usage.

For complete information about this opportunity, including how to apply, click here.