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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

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Cultural exchange broadens perspective

?The first thing I realized was that everything is bigger: the streets, cars and buildings,? Gerrit Wischer said, when he arrived in the United States. Wischer and ten other students came from Muenster, Germany, on Sept. 8, to spend two months in California.

During the first four weeks, Wischer and 10 other exchange students lived with host families and attending schools in Fresno and Clovis. Now they travel three weeks around California.

?I wanted to do this exchange,? Stefan Effing explained, ?in order to get to know the people in the United States.? He and Wischer attended Fresno Christian for one month.

?Some classes were very easy,? Wischer said, ?but we switched classes, because they were too difficult.? It took some time until they were used to the different school system. However, Effing and Wischer had a good time while on campus.

?I like the community at Fresno Christian,? Effing said. ?Students spend more time together and the teachers are more like friends. In Germany, we don?t have trips for the whole school, like the beach trip, and normally we never watching our sport teams when they have games.?

?At first,? Wischer said, ?we didn?t know anything about football.? In Germany soccer is the most common sport. But after watching almost every Eagle football game in the last weeks, both boys now know most rules.

Wischer and Effing got new experiences as well, when they went fishing while camping with their host, Tyler Tharpe, father of Chris Tharpe, ?08. Both were thankful for their host family.

?The life with the family was good. Our host parents are from Germany as well. And our host mother speaks German; we had no problems with the communication,? Effing said.

?It was good living together,? Wischer said who did not know Effing before the exchange, ?but maybe it is better if we would live alone in a host family.? Both attended another exchange where they lived with a second exchange student.

?I think,? Effing said, ?that we would get different experiences if we live alone.? However both think that it was never boring living with another student.

On their last school day the choir class organized a party to say good-bye. Both were really surprised about it and said that at their school in Germany students and teachers are not so friendly.

?I enjoyed my time at Fresno Christian,? Effing said, ?and I wish I could stay longer.? However, the group has already left Fresno to visit San Francisco, Las Vegas, Palm Springs and the Grand Canyon on Oct. 9.

?I have never been before to California,? Wischer said. ?I am really excited about the trip.?

The group will return to Germany Oct. 26.

Julia Schnur continues her one-year cultural exchange as a senior on campus. For more information on Schnur, read the Sept. 22 online article, “Exchange student a world away,” by Schnur.

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