The US Exchange Program 2015-2016
Antony Yip 4A
I joined the US exchange program last year and stayed in Minnesota for ten months. I lived in a town called Grygla. Grygla is a very small town with the population of less than 300 people. Some of you might be surprised and got a question in your mind, "How could you live in a small town, seeing the same bunch of people every single day?" Everyone in Grygla is pretty close. There is only one bank, one convenience store and one post office in the town. When you go get snacks at the store, you may find your friends working there. Or when you go to the bank, you see your neighbour working there. We are so close and have a good relationship. That’s the difference between big cities and small towns.
I stayed with a big family. My host mum and dad were Joni and Lyle and my three host brothers were Nolan, Sam, and Kyle, but Sam and Kyle lived in other states. Although we did not live together, we could see each other really often. Whenever there was a festival, we gathered and celebrated together. Also, Nolan was in sixth grade, so he stayed with me most of the time.
There was another exchange student, Arman, who lived with me. He was from Berlin, Germany. We got along pretty well and sometimes we went to the gym before school started. As I lived in a small town, there were only 15 students in my grade at school. They are all amazing and friendly students. I played basketball and did track events in winter and spring. It was fun to play and chat with all my American friends. Also, I studied German at school. It is not a difficult language to me because it is similar to English.
One of the most memorable events during my stay there was watching an NFL game in downtown. NFL was an American professional football league. It was so awesome to watch a live match at a big stadium and I could not believe that I was not watching it on TV that night! During winter days, Nolan, Arman and I went skiing and snowboarding three times! It was so fun to ski from the top of a mountain.
Besides that, I tried some new things such as attending a prom, driving a snow motorbike, mowing the lawn and learning a new language. I also received a medal at the Track meet. It was incredible that I did so many things in only ten months!
This exchange program really helped improve my communication skills. Students can speak fluent English, just like a native American in only ten months. For anyone who is worrying about the cost of the exchange programme, all the things that you go through and experience is totally worthwhile.
Antony Yip 4A