Cultural Adjustment

Why Host an Exchange Student?

Why Host an Exchange Student?

For a year, you will share your home, family, and life with someone who, in the beginning, will be a total stranger. It takes a special kind of family to consider themselves as potential hosts, and it’s only natural to ask, “What does my family have to gain from it?”

Inspiration

Kids whose parents host an exchange student are often inspired to study abroad, learn a new language, or travel in the future. In our progressively more globally connected world, an appreciation and respect for cultures beyond one’s own is a valuable, marketable outlook.

Cultural No-No’s

Cultural No-No’s

Did you know that in Bulgaria, shaking your head means “yes” and nodding your head means “no”?

These cultural differences are ubiquitous around the world. As a responsible host, it is your job to know what they are to prevent possible misunderstandings. The steps are simple: Follow these for smooth sailing with your exchange student!

Two-Way Street

Two-Way Street

Your exchange student may be coming to the U.S. to learn the language and embrace the culture, but reciprocity is key to a successful relationship.

To help your student feel more at home, embrace his or her own culture. Whether your student hails from Ukraine or Thailand, make it a family affair and plan a traditional menu, perhaps including your student’s favorite dish from home and some festive decorations. Your student will become more comfortable, and your family will learn something new in a fun, delicious way!

After the Orientation

After the Orientation

Your exchange student has finally arrived! He or she has met the family, toured your home and about town, and registered for classes. After that whirlwind of excitement, things have just begun to settle down – but what now?

Talk to your student. Ask him or her:

What are your goals for the year?

Total language immersion?

A rich cultural experience?

A particular academic study?

Living in a "Melting Pot" Society - A Kosovar's Experience in the U.S.

Living in a "Melting Pot" Society - A Kosovar's Experience in the U.S.

Alba submitted the following essay as a part of the 2012-13 My American Experience Essay Contest and won first place! She was asked to write about her experience as a exchange student in the U.S. and how that has affected her as a leader. Alba is on the YES program and is from Kosovo.

 

 

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