Students will come across challenges in their daily lives as an exchange student that they’ve never faced before. Everything is new to them as they adjust to their lives in a foreign country with a different culture and language. It probably seems scary at the beginning, but these everyday experiences will teach them numerous lessons in their year abroad.

They learn something every day both in and outside of the classroom. The teachers are there to assist in the transition and provide advice for new students. The host family is there to take care of the student and will make the stay with them as comfortable as possible. It will also be great to make friends with the locals and students from other countries.

1. Personal growth

The life of an exchange student has its ups (good times) and downs (sad times). The good times aren’t just good; they can be unique, amazing, and beautiful all at the same time! However, sometimes homesickness sets in or there are feelings of alienation and the best way to combat these is just go out and enjoy this fantastic life and remember that happiness is a state of mind.

When the exchange period ends, these young students will possess a better understanding of the culture of a foreign country. They’ve survived the good and the bad and returned home after living through a unique experience for a person their age. They will have strength, confidence, and understanding which few students learn this early in their lives.

2. Live with a family

The high school exchange student has a “host” family that takes responsibility for them during the year abroad. The student becomes a part of the family where they can spend time exchanging cultures, languages, and learn about each other. At the end of the year, a long-lasting relationship has developed that can last a lifetime.

3. Make new friends from everywhere

The exchange program will offer meetings and trips for the international students from different countries. They have a lot in common regardless of the country they come from. Getting together with other foreign exchange students can be a lot of fun. They can become great friends and support for one another during the exchange period. The foreign exchange students face the most challenging experiences for a young person, and it’s great to know others who are going through the same things. These friendships usually last a long time with lasting memories.

4. Learn a foreign language

Students will have the chance to learn the language of the host country and it is the quickest way to learn. From the day the students arrive, they are hit from every direction with this new language. International students learn it a lot faster than sitting in a classroom back home. They learn it in the same way a child learns to speak and most will be fluent enough for conversation. The experience of being an exchange student and learning a foreign language will give the students a wider range of opportunities in their future careers.

5. Experience the culture

Living with a host family and attending school with the local kids will immediately immerse the student in the local culture. They experience the culture through the food, family traditions, architecture, and conversation. It doesn’t take long for the student to adapt and behave like a local. It makes them feel like a global citizen and gives them a better understanding of the difference in cultures. When they return home, they’ll have a lot to share with family and their friends.

Being an exchange student for a year is the best thing a student can do at this time in their life. You meet best friends, and learn to appreciate everything in your life. Also, you learned more about yourself than you would believe possible. You picked up great people skills, and most of all you realize what a fantastic experience you had as a foreign exchange student.

Written By:

Diana Beyer

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