Emily Merson

Executive Director, AIFS Abroad


Emily is an experienced international educator, co-founding Global Experiences in 2001 and becoming CEO in 2013.  During her tenure as CEO, Emily championed strategic growth of the organization, innovative program development and leading a global team of 50 staff in 15 cities.  In her new role as Executive Director of AIFS Abroad she will be bringing together three programs, AIFS Custom Programs, AIFS Study abroad and Global Experiences Internships into a newly reimagined global organization, ready to serve the needs of students and universities in the 21st century.

Emily has a BA in Political Science and Science & Technology from the University of New South Wales, and a Masters of Social Science and International Peace and Conflict Research from Uppsala University in Sweden. Prior to working in international education Emily spent time interning at UNESCO Indonesia and working at The Asia Australia Institute on regional cooperation. In 2015, Emily was awarded Enterprising Woman of the Year by Enterprising Women’s Magazine. Over the last five years, Emily has served on NAFSA sub-committees and as the Chairperson on an internships task force for the Forum on Education Abroad and most recently on the Forum’s re-opening task force. Emily has presented at a variety of global conferences on Innovation in International Education.