From sun and hot to rain and cold: Australian exchange students arrive in WA
Aussies arrive in Lake Stevens for a 10-day visit.
January 25, 2017
Filed under Features
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Lake Stevens High School has been in the project of hosting Australian exchange students for 6 years.
In January, 23 students and 3 chaperones arrived in our state with the purpose of seeing how life looks like in the US and living the differences between their country and here. Host families’ aims are similar, they want to know what their school is like, what their habits are or what they do after high school: a real exchange of cultures.
The Australian exchange students left their country on December 29 for the United States. They spent a week visiting California, mainly Los Angeles, touring Disneyland Universal Studios and San Francisco to experience the sight of the Golden Gate Bridge. On January 4, they finally arrived in Lake Stevens to join their host families. Their itinerary included daily trips to visit some of the most important places in Washington state. They had the opportunity to visit Seattle, Snoqualmie Falls, Leavenworth and to experience their first snow, even learning how to ski in the Cascade Mountains. In these 10 days, they also had the opportunity to spend time with their host family during the weekends and to attend LSHS for two days, following the classes of their host sister or brother.
Breanna Allan, one of the Aussies, wanted to join this experience to know another culture different from the one of her country. She built a great relationship with her host family in only 10 days, and she was wasn’t excited to go back to Australia with the exception of seeing her family and friends. She enjoyed living the American life for a few days and attending LSHS, which is completely different from the school she attends. For her, the most exciting part of this experience was playing in the snow, something that couldn’t be experienced in Australia. “This experience is not how I imagined; it’s way better,” said Allan.
Both families and students are always satisfied of this successful life experience. “This is my third year involved in it, and every year the same families come back to do it again because they loved it so much,” said Melonie Grieser, the Australian hosting group chief.
Hosting someone from another country is an immense opportunity, not only at a cultural level, but also at a relationship one. In only ten days, families and students create a big bond, that despite the distance or the difference of cultures, is hard to break.