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Bienvenidos a Atlanta, Welcoming the Exchange Students

Cate S., Staff Writer

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Photo courtesy of Mia L.

Every year, foreign exchange students from Spain visit at the start of February, but this year Westminster is also welcoming a group from China.

On Monday, February 5, all of the students introduced themselves during Monday Morning Meeting, telling everyone about their hobbies.

As the new exchange students arrive, many hosts are eager to see what the next two weeks will bring. Some hosted last year, but for others this will be their first year they are bringing a new culture into their homes.

Lawrence M., a seventh grade boy, has a Chinese student staying with his family. He said, “I have hosted before, but not at Westminster. When it came time to sign up to be a host, I thought, why not?”

Although seventh grader Margaret R. has not been a part of the program before, she and her family are hosting two Spanish students. When asked why she wanted to host, Margaret said, “My family and I really wanted to bring a new culture into our home to see what it’s like.”

Not only do the exchange students get to experience American culture, but many of the hosts get the opportunity to explore parts of Atlanta that they have never seen before.

Mia L., an eighth grade girl, said, “We are going to the Aquarium, and we went to Mo Mo Ya last night. We also get to go to a lot of nice places, and we get to do cool stuff that I never really get to do myself.” Lawrence M. agreed.

The Spanish and Chinese students arrived on Sunday, February 4. Since then, the hosts and their exchange students have had time to bond and learn about each other’s cultures, but they still have plenty to look forward to.

Margaret is looking forward to more time with her two exchange students. She said, “I am looking forward to going out to dinner, hanging out, or going to new places with them.”

Having the exchange students come stay with Westminster families is a unique and special opportunity for everyone involved. This program allows different cultures to come together and bond. Not only does it allow the exchange student to experience the American lifestyle, but it also gives the host some extra time to practice their language skills.

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Bienvenidos a Atlanta, Welcoming the Exchange Students