• Just like your students, no two (programs) are alike. We tailor every program to each group’s needs, interests, and budget.
  • Our team and clients are family. AEA is built on genuine relationships. When you travel with us, you may eat a home-cooked meal in our relative’s kitchen or spend the night in the jungle with a family friend, for example. Our team is family and we treat you like family, too.
  • Safety is important to us. We have an in-country team that will greet you upon arrival, local bilingual guides that will accompany you throughout the program, and a 24/7 emergency line you can call at any time. We also provide extensive pre-departure info that includes the location of nearest hospitals, important phone numbers, and even a list of tips on how to stay safe while traveling abroad.
  • We care about the people and places where we travel, too. Have you ever had a guest with bad manners in your home? They ruin the experience for everyone! When we travel, we are guests in the countries, communities, and homes we visit. So we want to ensure we are always observing and learning from locals, and asking how we can do better. We believe in “responsible travel” – actively increasing our positive impact and decreasing our negative impact on people and planet – and we hope you do, too.

Academic Experiences Abroad (AEA) is a full service, educational program provider specializing in customized, faculty-led programs. We have been operating since 2005 and have sent more than 5,000 students and faculty abroad on highly specialized, yet affordable, faculty-led programs lasting between seven days and three months. From Anime to Service Learning and Business to Language Immersion, with variety in between, we make sure your program is complete, safe, and unique. We promise to give you excellent, personal service, and we will work hard to meet your expectations as well as your budget.

It may be hard to imagine a time when few people from the United States were visiting Asia, but Academic Experiences Abroad (AEA) founder and director, Sam Brier, remembers it well. In fact, he was there. After spending nearly a decade working with universities and NGOs in Japan, China, Laos, Thailand, and East Timor, he returned to the US in 2003 with a vision of establishing an educational and experiential avenue for cross-cultural exchange and understanding. At the time, China and the US were at odds over the Spy Plane incident, the Bird Flu was all over the news, and very few Americans were traveling to Asia.

In 2005, in an effort to create unique programs and facilitate meaningful connections for university groups traveling to Asia, Academic Experiences Abroad was launched. After just one year of successful programs, clients began asking us to create programs to Brazil, Ghana, and Europe, so we started exploring those possibilities. As our clients’ needs have evolved, we have grown too, expanding our services while always keeping in mind the original mission. Today, AEA continues to facilitate connections and offer unique, customized, faculty-led programs. But our programs are no longer limited to Asia; they are available throughout Asia, Europe, Latin America, Oceania, the Caribbean, and parts of Africa.


Wondering who is on the other end of the phone line, behind the computer screen, or out on the road scouting the best places and projects for your students? Click the button below to see a sampling of our team members that will help you bring your program vision to life.

We are happy to chat via email, telephone, or video and can also arrange in-person meetings at your institution or at conferences, such as NAFSA, ACTFL, and Forum. We are not only experts in creating and managing meaningful faculty-led programs, we also care deeply about the impact that AEA programs have on the participants and the people and places visited.


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