Program Objectives

Provide Group Leaders the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the field of international education and cross-cultural communication.


Provide opportunity for Group Leaders to develop skills and techniques applicable to careers in an international workplace.

Provide opportunity for Group Leaders to understand work ethics in the Japanese cultural context.

We send participants on a once in a lifetime experience that will give them a very personal experience with the Japanese culture.

During the summer programs, participants immerse themselves into Japanese culture, make lifelong friendships, and learn a great deal about themselves.

The benefits acquired from living outside of your own cultural comfort zone are invaluable.

How does it work?

Each week Group Leaders are sent to different locations throughout Japan. There they will stay with a Japanese host family or in a hotel. Group Leaders spend the week (Monday to Friday) at the participating school.

Each week the program is directed by facilitators who lead Group Leaders and Japanese students by providing various empowerment themes and lessons. Group Leaders get together in small groups with students and discuss varying viewpoints and examine how to make use of empowerment skills personally.

While the curriculum provides the opportunity to explore themes and learn about critical thinking, Group Leaders also have the unique opportunity to inspire Japanese students to pursue their own passions, goals, and aspirations through their own viewpoints and stories.

Primary Responsibilities and Requirements

  • Attend 4-5 hours mandatory pre-departure orientation session (location & time to TBD)
  • Read and respond to all pre-departure material related to Japanese culture and program features
  • Attend orientation program in Japan prior to commencement of program
  • Act as a leader to students on projects and small group discussions
  • Share from life experiences to teach, inspire and motivate students
  • Prepare for various discussions by reviewing handouts and videos
  • Participate in various activities with students
  • Comply with all rules and regulations established by GPI/ISA
  • Japanese language proficiency is not required.

Program Costs Covered by GPI US

  • Airfare: Round trip ticket to Japan from USA departing locations (travel to departure airport not included)
  • Inbound Travel insurance: Included
  • Residency: Homestay and hotel
  • Meals: All meals included except weekend lunch (homestay & hotel stay)
  • Transportation in Japan: School commute (Personal travel is not covered)
  • Salary: No salary provided.

Who Can Apply

  • Holders of passports issued by a country or region that are visa exempt for visits up to 45 days in Japan.
  • Applicants must currently be enrolled in a 4-year college/university or graduate program in the United States (required to show a valid college/university ID) or be a recent graduate.

Recent graduates must satisfy the following requirements to qualify:

    • Applicant will graduate in May (2019) or after, admission to a graduate school is not required


    • Graduating between September 2018 -  April 2019, must be accepted to a graduate program for Fall 2019 enrollment and must show proof in the form of an admission letter.
    • Without proof of acceptance, application will be reviewed on a case by case basis

Means of Disqualification

The following disqualification criteria apply to applicants as well as to individuals who are selected to participate in the Japan Empowerment Program.

The decision to disqualify an individual will be reviewed and be at the discretion of GPI US.

The reasons individuals may be disqualified include, but are not limited to the following:

  • The individual’s application documents contain false statements.
  • Required forms or information are not submitted by the set deadlines.
  • Inability to attend any of the GPI US orientations.
  • An individual has committed an act deemed inappropriate by ISA staff and/or GPI US staff.

We recommend students interested in this program to apply by the early submission deadline. Every year the application process becomes more selective and competitive by the general submission deadline. 


How to Apply

Choose the regional office closest to your university and submit the following:

East Coast Regional Office
Los Angeles Office
Seattle Office
San Francisco Office

  • Letter of Interest:
    1) why you would like to take part in this volunteer opportunity
    2) availability and program(s) interested in)
  • Resume:
    1) Year of study
    2) Major
    3) Work experience
    4) Volunteer experience, etc.
  • 2 Professional References:
    List 2 references with address, email address, and contact number.
  • Complete Online Application: 
    1) Fill all fields
    2) Complete 2 prompts using the application form


Any Questions?

East Coast Office at

SEA, SF, & LA Office at

Early Submission Deadline
Dec 21st, 2018

General Submission Deadline
Dec 22nd, 2018 - Feb 20th, 2019

*Please note that while the GPI US screens and selects applicants for ISA, selected participants are not 'hired' by GPI US or ISA.*

Program Duration

(To Be Confirmed)

Term dates and availabilities for each region are to be confirmed at a later date. All programs listed below may be available during each term duration, however, please keep in mind that GPI US cannot guarantee acceptance to specific programs as requested by applicants. Applicants must be flexible to participate in any of our programs, (Standard, STEM, Women) to be accepted. Though most of our programs are four weeks long, applicants must also understand the program duration for each term may range from one to four of the weeks in the dates indicated below. 

Term 1: July 4th ~ August 6th
(LA Region Only)

Term 2: July 11th ~ August 13th
(SEA, SF & East Coast Region Only)

 Term 3: July 18th~ August 20th
(LA & East Coast Region Only)

Term 4: July 25th ~ August 27th
(LA Region Only)

Term 5: July 18th ~ August 13th
(SEA & SF Region Only)

Term 6: August 15th ~ September 3rd  
(SEA & SF Region Only)

Updated: December 3rd, 2018 

japan empowerment

Program Type

class japan empowerment


Program Overview

The key features of the content is to challenge Japanese high school students to be more independent thinkers who are better equipped to excel personally. Through lectures and small group discussions Japanese students will examine and discuss various topics and participate in projects and presentations. The program encourages students to value personal responsibility for choices as the key to happiness and contributing value to local and global societies.

Women's Studies

Program Overview

Women's Studies Empowerment Program is designed by Kerianne Panos, founder of MCML Consulting service, with strong focus on empowerment of girls. During the program in Japan, we will be working closely with Japanese high school students to help them explore their identity, build confidence, resilience and integrity to become successful global leaders in the future. Additionally, English with its strong focus on individualism and self-expression, helps students build their confidence by encouraging them to speak out and be heard.

japan empowerment group
japan empowerment class photo


Program Overview

The key features of the content is to challenge Japanese high school students to be more independent thinkers who are better equipped to excel personally. Through lectures and small group discussions that touch on various STEM subjects, Japanese students will examine and discuss various topics along side American university STEM students.

❝Success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.❞ – Winston Churchill