History and Objectives of the Program
The Japanese Agricultural Training Program (JATP) is a work/training educational program for Japanese students supported by joint-sponsors the Japanese Agricultural Exchange Council (JAEC) and the Big Bend Community College Foundation (BBCCF). While enrolled in this program, the Japanese exchange students live and work on farms learning by application, including the diplomatic mission of cultural exchange, in which trainee insight into American culture and institutions is developed through participation in host family and community activities. Over 5,000 trainees have attended Big Bend Community College (BBCC) as part of the JATP.
The Japanese Agricultural Training Program was founded in 1966 funded by various ministries within the Japanese government to operate the JATP in the US. The JATP program is focused on improving Japan’s agriculture via the transfer of U.S. technology and farming methods and building international relations. Today’s JATP is the result of cooperation between the Japan Agricultural Exchange Council and the Big Bend Community College Foundation.
Big Bend Community College provides academic as well as comprehensive on-the-farm training for the JATP students. The joint effort of the JATP sponsors to provide support to the trainees and host farmers, and agreements between the United States and Japan permit the trainees to work while undergoing training, so that the Program is self-sustaining.
The agreements direct the assistance of the Department of Labor and the Bureau of Citizenship & Immigration Service, Department of Homeland Security in implementing these programs. Services include wage rate determination, coordination of employment activities between Federal and State services, and facilitating visa and passport requirements. Federal decisions have verified the trainees’ student status, and exempted them from contributions to Social Security Tax and Federal Income Tax.
Becoming a Host Farm Participant
If you are interested in hosting a trainee or for more information about the Japanese Agricultural Training Program, please contact: