Chapin Chronicle

The Chapin High School Newspaper

Chapin Chronicle

The Chapin High School Newspaper

Chapin Chronicle

Foreign World

Saying goodbye to her friends and family, senior Chiara Tonini leaves her home in Italy. On her first international flight to her orientation in New York City.

“We got the chance to see a lot of things like the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge and Central Park,” Chiara said. “It was an experience.”

Chiara arrived in the US the first of August, while junior Aaron Boeing prepares for his flight out of Germany.

“The flight was impressive, but it was really tiny,” Aaron said. “We got a lot of food, it was good. I had like 3 flights and only slept an hour before and was awake for 50 hours.”

Creating her schedule, Chiara wanted to try out for the cheer team.

“It’s something that you always see in movies, so it was one of my dreams to be a high school cheer leader. I am really happy about it too,” Chiara said. “I do a sport similar to it. I really like seeing differences between things.”

Both Chiara and Aaron are with the foreign exchange program International Student Exchange or ISE. ISE gives them two options, to study aboard for a semester or for 2 semesters.

“I choose only a semester because of the school in Italy is really hard. I feel like it would be less difficult to catch for just a semester and not the whole year,” Chiara said. “Another thing, I have to be honest, is that it’s a semester away from family and friends, and your comfort zone, it’s not an easy choice to do, so I made my choice.”

ISE finds a host family for exchange students, a family that they will stay with for their entire exchange year.

“I had 2 host families and was kicked out of my first host family in 1 and a half weeks,” Aaron said. “It was a critical experience and a sad experience.”

A host family’s job is to take care of their assigned exchange student. They help provide food and transportation. There is often more than one exchange student for each host family. Aaron shared a host family with an Italian exchange student, Carlo Fisher.

“For my first family, the host dad just wanted to feel like head of the house,” Aaron said. “They were fighting, and we didn’t want to stand between them.”

Every exchange student has a local coordinator in their city. After Aaron got removed from his first host family, he went to live with his local coordinator for three weeks.

“They already had 2 other exchange students living with them. We went on trips together,” Aaron said. “We went to Washington DC, Florida, and Ohio.”

Having a foreign exchange year also affects other students.

“It shows that even if you go other places, that humans are humans,” junior Gabriella Aguilar said. “It helps Aaron explore the world and helps students around him that wherever you are you can connect with people.”

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