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WYSE Travel Confederation Buyer member - Divan International - Amman, Jordan
Welcome to our new member – Divan International
WYSE News | November 23, 2023

1. Tell us your story. How did Divan International get started?

Divan International came into existence in 1992 as a travel agency. 28 years ago, it changed to specialize into cultural exchange & educational travel agency. In 2008, Divan became a nonprofit organization. It is an accredited and licensed agency founded by Eng. M. Kamal Wajih Al Hijazi, a former cultural exchange student himself in the USA, educationist and culture-inspired person who formally managed many international businesses and joint ventures. As a general director recruiting staff, he discovered after interviewing many university graduates that he found them unemployable. Being unable to speak English or having no practical experience were the main obstacles against placing them in job positions. For these reasons, Kamal decided to help them out and that is where the idea of Divan originated. He put everything he had learned as an exchange student into successful training; he had finished high school and university in the US and thus had a lot of experience studying English as a second language, studying whilst working and gaining practical work experience. Divan was founded with a focus on making the world a secure and better place for its people, to meet their needs, to inspire and to make a difference in their lives – a focus that keeps on resonating with the organization today.

2. What makes Divan International different from your competitors?

Divan is the founder of the cultural exchange and J-1 programs to the Middle East, Jordan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. Arguably, Divan is the best leading cultural exchange, educational, training, language, and travel organization, widely known for its unique services for travelers from Arab countries. The organization was founded with the intention of helping youth and students have a successful future, by preparing and qualifying them to be employable.

3. What is your favourite success story from your organisation?

Divan is not only an organization that operates to enroll students in cultural exchange programs, but also it continues to assist its students to find good internships and rewarding jobs. We have sent interns and trained students to NASA and CISCO with the association of the crown prince organization in Jordan. We have helped our students to work with top companies like Boss Allen, Hamilton and Ford.

4. What can we expect to see from Divan International in the future?

We have recently started a professional cultural center to teach the Arabic language for non natives here in Amman, Jordan. The Arabic language is a strong contender for the title of the language of humanity. It is a widely spoken language with a rich and diverse cultural heritage. It is also a language that is still evolving and growing.

5. Which trends do you see in educational and active youth travel?

In addition to our cultural exchange programs, we have started to specialize in summer and winter camps for youth from eight to 16 years old. We have already done summer camps in Spain, England, Ireland, Malaysia and Turkey. We are also planning to use Jordan as a summer camp destination.

6. How do you work to ensure the health and safety of young travelers involved with Divan International?

Divan works with US insurance company Envisage Global Insurance.

7. What was your motivation to join WYSE Travel Confederation?

WYSE is a global organization that serves the youth, student, and educational travel industry. Joining WYSE Travel Confederation can offer various benefits for businesses in our field. And it was recommended by our J-1 sponsor (Council on International Educational Exchange).

8. Have you attended a WYSE Travel Confederation event? (WYSTC, STAY WYSE, WYSE Exchange Australia, WETM-IAC) If so, what was your experience with the event?

Divan has attended three WYSTC conferences in Edinburgh and Lisbon. I have liked each one of them!

9. What is an industry challenge your organisation is facing currently?

The main challenge Divan International faces is the visa refusal rate for cultural exchange programs, which will lead to reduced diversity of participants in cultural exchange programs. This limitation may result from potential participants being discouraged from applying due to the perceived difficulty of obtaining a visa. This was a result of so many new, inexperienced agents for SWAT program not screening applicants, resulting in many participants overstaying the program, which in turn led to high rates of visa denial.

Interview with
Kamal Hazem Wajih Al Hijazi
Divan International

Member snapshot

Divan is arguably the best leading cultural exchange, educational, training, language, and travel organization, widely known for its impeccable service for youth & Students from the Arab countries. An organization founded with a focus on making youth and students successful in their future, by preparing & qualifying them to be employable in a secured world and better place for its people, to meet their needs, to inspire and to make a difference in their lives, a focus that keeps on resonating with the organization today.

A member of ICEF and The World Youth and Student Travel Confederation- WYSTC, a partner with Cultural on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) of USA. Divan has been sending Jordanian students to the USA on educational and Cultural Exchange programs as internships and professional career training (PCT) we have sent students to train to NASA and to CISCO

Membership type: Buyer Member

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