History of AIFS

History of AIFS

AIFS was founded by a trio of young professionals working together at Proctor & Gamble  in the early 1960s. This trio took their inspiration to form their new business from AIFS founder and Chairman, Cyril Taylor’s (1935 - 2018) wife, Judy.

A high school French teacher, Judy wanted to take her class on an educational trip to France however there were few companies that organised international study/travel programs.

In 1964, Cyril Taylor and his partners left the security of their corporate jobs to form the American Institute for Foreign Study. AIFS ended its first season with 1,500 students participating on an AIFS program. 

In the same year AIFS created the AIFS Foundation with the assistance of one of our most visionary political leaders, the late Senator Robert F. Kennedy.

In 1970, AIFS established Richmond, the American International University in London, a non-profit university with 1,000 full-time students from 100 countries.

2 years later AIFS started its Camp America program in Australia (1972) and has since become one of the leading camp counsellor providers in the country.

In 1999 AIFS established its own office in Melbourne and added additional opportunities for young Australians to participate on cultural exchange programs to the US. In 2005 AIFS acquired the inbound business of CIEE and expanded its programs to include Work & Travel, Au Pair, Farm & Travel and Volunteer. Currently, the AIFS head office is located in Sydney delivers programs to over 2,000 young people into, or out from Australia every year.