USJETAA/Sasakawa USA Grants for JETAA Chapters and Sub-chapters

In partnership with the Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA, USJETAA administers the Chapter Grant Program for JETAA Chapters and Sub-Chapters. This grant program provides opportunities for the alumni associations of the Japan Exchange & Teaching Program (JET Program) to partner with Sasakawa USA and USJETAA to organize events and activities on U.S.-Japan relations in their regions. To build the JET alumni associations’ capacity and activities to improve the U.S. Japan relationship, Sasakawa USA, USJETAA, and the selected chapters will collaborate to develop the programs of the grant. USJETAA and Sasakawa USA will work with the chapters to workshop these events.

Applications are currently closed.

2020 - 2021 Grantees

In the fifth year of the program, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA have awarded grants to three JETAA chapters. The selected JETAA chapters are:

JETAA DC - Mentorship Program

This five-month virtual mentorship program serves to bring the JET alumni community together by creating meaningful professional development relationships between recent returnees and mid-to-senior career professionals. This program is designed to provide mentees with the tools, resources, and networks that they can use to advance their careers in U.S.-Japan relations and to assist them during an uncertain job market. JETAADC hopes to support recent returnees and strengthen the U.S.-Japan pipeline by building upon a previous grant project that JETAADC held through the USJETAA/SPFUSA mini-grant program on “Maintaining the JET Momentum: The Post-Exchange Pipeline to Successful U.S.-Japan Leadership”.

JETAA Chicago

JETAA Chicago will host a webinar series centered around the themes of identity, cultural understanding and leadership, as experienced by JET alumni and individuals with meaningful connections to Japan. The program will involve two webinars, scheduled for late January and February, respectively. For the first event on January 28th, speakers will explore the hidden roots of the Japanese community in the Midwest and how we as JETs can continue to build meaningful U.S.-Japan relations. We will share a link to sign up and more details on the event in the coming weeks.

JETAA Southern California

Will hold an event focusing on the Little Tokyo area of Los Angeles. The event will bring together speakers from the Japanese American community to offer historical information about Little Tokyo and its significance to Los Angeles, while also addressing the effects of the COVID pandemic on the district.


Grant Program Details

Application Instructions

Applications are closed.

About the Grant Program

This grant program intends to support JETAA chapters in hosting robust events that further U.S.-Japan relations at the grassroots level. By receiving this grant and working with Sasakawa USA/USJETAA, we expect the JETAA chapters will be able to elevate their leadership role in their local U.S.-Japan community as well as strengthen the JET alumni network in the United States. The program also intends to support the event planners/chapter leaders take on more ambitious programs than they could without the grant. In addition, we hope to provide JETAA chapters an opportunity to learn about the grant process for those interested in applying for larger grants at other organizations in the future.

All applications should have a clear focus on a particular aspect of U.S.-Japan relations. Applicants should think critically about the application questions and elaborate as much as possible on how the event contributes to U.S.-Japan relations in their local community.

Please contact Bahia Simons-Lane at USJETAA office with questions or to discuss ideas at any time: 202.653.9800 or

Successful grantees will do the bulk of the planning and execution of the events. However, USJETAA and Sasakawa USA will be available to guide JETAA chapters through the grant writing and execution processes as needed. The support will be customized to individual chapters’ needs and may include assistance such as: workshopping during the early planning stages of conceptualizing the event, brainstorming or requesting speakers, and providing limited logistical support. Grantees are expected to abide by the grant agreement, which includes: meeting with USJETAA/Sasakawa USA periodically, tracking the usage of the funding, participating in a post-event review meeting, acknowledging the grantors, and promoting the event via social media (to advertise the event and to recap the event once it’s finished).


  1. Applicants must be a JETAA chapter or sub-chapter in good standing based in the United States.
  2. The chapter president and the individual coordinating the grant project (if a different person than the chapter president) must be signed up as a member of USJETAA. If you are not a member you can sign up for a free membership here:
  3. Your chapter must be a member of USJETAA. Not signed up yet? It just takes a few minutes. Do it here: Please use an email address not associated with an individual member account.
  4. Must submit a completed application.


Applications are closed.


Previous Grantees

Year 4: 2019-2020

In the fourth year of the program, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA awarded grants to four JETAA chapters.

New England JET Alumni Association - One Bite at a Time (Report)
Program date: February 21, 2020
The New England JETAA chapter partnered with the Japan Society of Boston (JSB) to co-host an educational event highlighting food as a universal language to build cultural understanding between the United States and Japan. Debra Samuels from Table For Two USA (TFT USA), a non-profit organization that promotes their original program, “Wa-Shokuiku: Learn. Cook. Eat Japanese!” facilitated an educational food education and bento workshop inspired by Japanese cuisine and philosophies. Attendees learned about the history, tradition, and cultural significance of popular Japanese food items as well as how food has helped facilitate strong U.S.-Japan ties. Attendees will learn how to prepare and eat a healthy, traditional Japanese bento lunch. In addition, Alexis Agliano Sanborn (Shimane, 2009-2011), a JET alumni and former member of the TFT team, will present the Boston premiere of her documentary Nourishing Japan on kyushoku (Japanese school lunch), and shokuiku (food education) in Japan.  This event will be the second collaboration between NEJETAA and JSB.

JET Alumni Association of Washington, D.C. (JETAADC) - Maintaining the JET Momentum: The Post-Exchange Pipeline to Successful U.S.-Japan Leadership (REPORT)

Program date: November 7, 2019
JETAADC held an event celebrating the 30th anniversary of the founding of the JETAADC alumni chapter. The program emphasized the connections and continuing impact of JETs on U.S. Japan relations in the Washington, DC, region.

JET Alumni Association of Southeast (JETAASE) – Alabama Sub-Chapter - Opportunities to Strengthen Japan-Alabama Ties (REPORT)
Program date: September 15, 2019

The JETAASE Alabama Sub-chapter held a seminar to inspire students and young professionals in Alabama to think about Japan-related career opportunities within the region. The program featured discussions on Japanese ties to the State of Alabama, experience of Americans working for a Japanese company in the United States, and opportunities to gain international experience in Japan. JETAASE Alabama Sub-chapter partnered with the Japan America Society of Alabama to put on this event.

Read a summary of these events in the 2019-2020 Grant Report.

Year 3: 2018 – 2019

In the third year of the program, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA awarded grants to four JETAA chapters.

Read a summary of these events in the 2018-2019 Grant Report.

Year 2: 2017 – 2018

In the second year of the program, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA awarded six grants from five JETAA chapters.

  • JET Alumni Association Heartland
  • JET Alumni Association of New York
  • JET Alumni Association Pacific Northwest
  • JET Alumni Association Rocky Mountain
  • JET Alumni Association of Texoma

Read about these events in the 2017-2018 Grant Report.

Year 1: 2016 – 2017

In its inaugural year, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA awarded a total of eight grants to seven JETAA chapters.

  • JET Alumni Association of Chicago
  • JET Alumni Association of Florida
  • JET Alumni Association of Minnesota
  • JET Alumni Association of New York
  • JET Alumni Association Pacific Northwest
  • JET Alumni Association of Southern California
  • JET Alumni Association of Washington, D.C.

Read about these events in the 2016-2017 Grant Report.