Japan Exchange and Teaching Program (JET)

The JET Program is an initiative sponsored by the Japanese government to promote internationalization at the grassroots level by bringing young, college-educated individuals to work in communities throughout Japan. Since 1987, over 60,000 participants from countries around the world have come to Japan on the JET Program. JET participants work full-time as Assistant Language Teachers (ALTs) in the public school system or as Coordinators for International Relations (CIRs) in local government offices. With the JET Program, participants can gain valuable work experience abroad and explore a rich and historical culture.

The JET Program is a competitive employment opportunity that allows young people from countries around the world to live and work in cities, towns, and villages throughout Japan. JET Program participants are not only teachers and public servants, they are cultural ambassadors of the United States to Japan, and only the best candidates are chosen to represent America. 


Applicants must:

  • 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 both mentally and physically healthy.
  • Be willing and able to adapt to living and working in Japan, and responsibly complete their term of appointment.
  • Applicants for both the ALT and CIR position must hold a Bachelor's degree or higher, or obtain such qualifications by the designated arrival date.
  • Be a national (not just a permanent resident) of the United States of America by the time they submit their application form. Furthermore, those who also possess Japanese nationality must have submitted their applications to renounce their Japanese nationality before submitting their Reply Form (a document only required of individuals who have passed the interview; the deadline for which will be in April 2018). Applicants who possess multiple nationalities with countries other than Japan may only apply as a national of one of those countries.
  • Be adept in contemporary standard pronunciation, rhythm and intonation in the designated language  and possess excellent language ability that can be applied accurately and appropriately; have the ability to form sentences in a comprehensive and logical manner.
  • Not have participated on the Program since the 2015-2016 JET Program year (inclusive of April 2015 arrivals) or have participated on the Program for more than five years in total.
  • Not have declined a position on the Program after receiving notification of placement in the last JET Program year (excluding cases where it is accepted that the participant had a valid, inevitable reason for withdrawing).
  • Not have lived in Japan for six or more years in total since 2008.
  • Have a desire to proactively maintain relations with Japan, even after completion of the Program.
  • Concerning entry into Japan for participation on the Program, agree to reside in Japan under the status of residence stipulated in Article 2-2 of the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act.
  • Be willing to obey all Japanese laws.
  • Applicants with a suspended jail term must have finished their period of probation by the time they submit their application form. 


As employment through the JET Program as an ALT or CIR is a full-time paid position, JET participants receive a monthly salary from their contracting organizations. 


Applications will open annually in Fall.


Deadlines and additional information is available on the JET website


Class Year

  • Senior
  • Recent Graduate
  • Post-baccalaureate
  • Graduate


  • Arts
  • Business
  • Communication
  • Education
  • Health
  • Humanities
  • International Affairs
  • Public Affairs/Government
  • Social Sciences
  • STEM
  • Multiple


  • English
  • Non English


  • Yearlong
  • Other

Program Type

  • Post-Graduate
  • Professional
  • Teach Abroad


  • Asia

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