Cultural Exchange Ambassadors

Applications for the Cultural Exchange Ambassadors programme 2020-21 are now open. Deadline: 18 January 2021

Cultural Exchange Ambassadors are English & German Language Assistants working in the other country. The programme provides Ambassadors with the opportunity to meet each other, partner up and run bilateral projects together.

“This project was definitely one of the highlights from my Year Abroad. It was a great experience for myself and my students.”

Get involved as a Cultural Exchange Ambassador!

With the challenges of both German language learning in the UK, and the impact of Covid-19 on international school exchange, it’s more important than ever to bring language lessons and intercultural learning to life. This programme provides your students with the opportunity to connect meaningfully with their peers in the other country, whilst discovering a new culture!

Important – Before applying you should:

  • read the following information very carefully
  • look at our Ambassador projects from 2020 to get a feel for the programme and what the role involves
  • speak with your mentor teacher and your school to make sure they support your application. They can read more about the programme on our advice for schools page.

Want to know more?

We’re running a number of virtual Q&A sessions for Language Assistants, including a short presentation about the programme (dates: 17 December, 7 & 14 January), as well as a session for teachers on 13 January. Sign-up to join one of these virtual Zoom sessions.

  • What do Cultural Exchange Ambassadors do?

    In your role as CEA, you’d work together with a partner or in a small bilateral cluster to:

    • run small joint projects, activities, events or clubs in order to inspire and motivate young people in your schools for the language and culture of the other country
    • enable young people to have direct, meaningful contact with young people in the other country and make lessons come to life through active involvement in joint projects with their peers
    • run at least one project within your school or in conjunction with other schools in the area

    What is a project?

    • Bilateral – projects should be run with a partner Ambassador from the other country, or with an existing partner school
    • Address themes that are of educational value, as well as interesting and relevant for pupils
    • Can be as long or as short as you like! You could run a project for the whole course of your assistantship, or just for a day (e.g. a project day!)
  • Who can apply?

    You can apply if you:

    • are currently employed as an English Language Assistant* (from the UK) at a school in Germany for the school year 2020-21 (deutsche Bewerber/-innen an britischen Schulen finden auf dieser Seite weitere Informationen)
    • have the time, interest and commitment to run at least one bilateral activity for your pupils, be an active member of this network and attend all webinars and/or seminars
    • have the support from your school to take part in the programme and attend webinars and/or seminars (see advice for schools for more information)

    *as part of the official British Council / Pädagogischer Austauschdienst (PAD) Language Assistants Programme

    English Language Assistants who are at their schools in Germany only until February are not eligible to apply for this second round of the programme.

  • When & where do you meet the other Ambassadors?

    In previous years, Ambassadors have met face-to-face for two seminars in London. The Covid-19 pandemic means that a face-to-face introductory meeting will not be possible. We remain hopeful that we will be able to run a face-to-face seminar in 2021, where all Ambassadors can meet.

    The plan for this year’s meetings is as follows:

    January/February 2021 – Introductory Webinars

    • Opportunity to plan projects, speak to previous Ambassadors, and get to know other English & German Language Assistants
    • Split into three smaller webinars:
      • Webinar 1: Monday, 25 January at 17.30 German time
      • Webinar 2: Thursday, 28 January at 17.30 German time
      • Webinar 3: Wednesday, 3 February at 17.30 German time

    March 2021 – “Check-in” meeting

    • Chance for Ambassadors to meet and share what they have done in their projects so far, and how their further planning is going
    • Scheduled for: Wednesday, 3 March

    May 2021 – Evaluation Seminar

    • Opportunity for Ambassadors to share their experiences, present their projects and evaluate the wider programme
    • A face-to-face Evaluation Seminar in London planned for Friday 7 – Sunday 9 May 2021

    If a face-to-face seminar goes ahead, UK-German Connection will cover the costs for the seminar(s), including travel, accommodation and subsistence. Participants will pay a small contribution of £25 / €30 towards seminar costs.

    All Ambassadors must be able to attend all meetings (including introductory webinars, March check-in, and May Evaluation Seminar).

  • What project support is available?

    Alongside dedicated webinars and seminars, UK-German Connection offers the following support for your project throughout your time as an Ambassador:

    • a project fund to support with project activities throughout the year
    • a forum for Ambassadors – for introductions, sharing project ideas, and keeping in touch throughout the year
    • group “check-in” conference calls (online) – Ambassadors can share project updates, discuss any challenges, and generally keep in touch
    • advice and support from programme alumni acting as mentors
    • a dedicated member of staff providing ongoing support throughout the year
  • What skills and competencies are expected?

    Get involved if you:

    • are enthusiastic about enhancing UK-German youth relations
    • have an interest in developing and running projects within your school
    • are able to work on your own initiative as well as within a network
    • are committed, reliable, open and flexible
    • possess good organisational skills
    • have good communication skills and intercultural awareness
  • Why should you apply?

    You will learn a whole host of skills throughout your time as a UK-German Cultural Exchange Ambassador. Running your own project is extremely rewarding, whilst also building up valuable skills for your future career…

    • Enhance your Language Assistant role and wider impact within your school
    • Connect your pupils with a classroom in the UK, helping them to learn about culture and life in the other country from their peers
    • Learn and improve your project management, time management, organisation and communication skills
    • Provide your school with a connection in the other country, which could become a longer-term partnership
    • Become a member of a dynamic network of like-minded people, meeting fellow Language Assistants from both countries

    Leading the project has helped me grow in confidence, as well as brought me into contact with teachers I otherwise might not have worked with. It gave me a proper role within the school in that both students and teachers became more aware of who I was, and what I could offer – namely, authentic information about Britain.

    Find out more about the programme and get inspired by the messages from past Ambassadors!

  • Project themes for 2020-21

    The overarching theme for this year’s projects is ‘Sustainability’. All Ambassadors will be encouraged to focus elements of their bilateral project on this theme. Projects could zoom in on any number of smaller sub-themes related to sustainability, such as:

    • the impact of our everyday choices (e.g. food, fashion, transport)
    • building more sustainable cities, spaces and public buildings
    • the importance of protecting our local areas (coastal regions, urban areas)

    Examples and guidance will be provided at the introductory webinars, but Cultural Exchange Ambassadors are also encouraged to develop their own ideas and activities on the theme of ‘Sustainablility’, and to think of ways to make these themes engaging for their pupils.

    Explore our 2020 Ambassador projects, which were also focussed on sustainability.

  • How to apply
    • Fill in the online application form outlining your motivation and experience (please refer to the application process guidelines and all information outlined on this page before applying.)
    • Download a copy of your application form for your own reference
    • A teacher at the school needs to support your application by providing a short reference. You can download the reference form from the online application form, or from the links below.
      • Your reference teacher should complete and sign the reference form, confirming that they are aware of and support your application to the programme
      • You will then be asked to upload the completed and signed reference form as part of the online application and before final submission
    • Teacher reference form – Word 
    • Teacher reference form – PDF

    The application deadline for 2020-21 is Monday, 18 January 2021.

    Applications will be assessed after the deadline, and we will contact you in within a week of the deadline to notify you of the outcome of your application.

    If you or your reference teacher have any questions about the above, please contact

  • Programme support

    The Cultural Exchange Ambassadors programme is carried out with the support of the Pädagogischer Austauschdienst, the British Council and the Goethe-Institut. You can find more information on the language assistants programme on their websites:

  • Contact us

    If you have any questions, or would like further information about the programme, please don’t hesitate to contact us:


    Alternatively, sign up to one of our Q&A sessions.