Foreign exchange students reflect on their stay in America

Audrey Strickhouser, Writer

Camilla Graglia

I have been able to travel to many different places with my host family, the Sneddens,  while here in America. Some of the places that I have traveled to are Indianapolis, Chicago, and Orlando. It was really cool to see all of these new places and spend time with my host family. With the Sneddens we have a lot of family time, during this time we play games, go out to eat, or just hang out at home and watch a movie. I am especially close with my host sister, Emma Snedden. We consider ourselves actual sisters because we spend so much time together and get along great. Although I cherish my host family, I still struggle with homesickness. It was a very huge change for me starting a whole new life in a new country and not having my family and friends around me from home has been sad. The whole experience of living in America takes time to get used to but has been one of the most amazing things I have experienced so far in my life.”

Julio Alvarado

“My time in America has consisted of many experiences that have enhanced my stay here. One of the best moments was sledding in Mr. Sullivan’s forensic science class. The snow was something that I was not familiar with, so it was very fun and exciting to try something new. I have made many great relationships in America, one of them being with my good friend Breanne Butts. We hang out a lot and laugh a lot when we are together. My biggest struggle right now is History class. The class is hard for me because It takes me a long time to read the english language. I am also not familiar with American history, so it’s all completely new for me. Yet to help solve this problem I am getting extra help sometimes after school from an ESL teacher. Overall my time here has been great; I will be sad to return home but happy to see my family.”

Emily Marten

“While living in America I have lived by the motto of enjoying every single moment and to be grateful for every single thing that I am able to do. Spring break is something new that I have never experienced and because of it I was able to visit Washington D.C. and Fort Myers beach with my host family. I have also had the privilege of becoming best friends with Maci Best, she also happens to be my neighbor which is convenient because we are able to spend lost of great time together; like playing the ukeles together. I take this friendship really serious and enjoy every single moment that we spend together because I know it will all be over soon and then I won’t be able to see her for a long time. While living here I have learned that it is okay to be the “new kid” and it’s actually quite fun being the foreign exchange student because people want to talk to me about my hometown Germany and get to know me because of it. I am a little sad to leave America because I will miss everything her but I am also excited to go home and see my family and go back to my old life.”