Tag Archives for " exchange student expectations "

We Had a Bad Hosting Experience . . . Why Should We Host Again?

Woman leaping over chasm at dusk

From an email we received during the last school year: We are currently hosting an exchange student. We are not enjoying it. The student is not as she described herself in her application. Our student is lazy, grumpy, and moody. Our home has felt awkward for months and we are anxious for her to leave. […]

Host Family Tips: How Can I Help My New Exchange Student in The First Few Weeks?

airplane with welcome words

Bringing a student into the home is not an automatic “we will live happily ever after” situation. It requires work and time to build a good relationship. It amazes us every year to see the lengths that families go to welcome their students: taking them on excursions around the community, showing them the local high […]

Is Culture Shock A Good Thing?

We’ve written before (see here and here, for example) about the impacts of culture shock as our students arrive on our shores thinking exchange student life will be easy and then realizing — rather suddenly — that life is harder than they thought. We’ve also shared thoughts (see here and here) on what it’s like […]

Should I or Shouldn’t I: Why Should I Tell the Exchange Program Anything This Personal?

Students’ families back home clearly make some decisions about what to disclose when they fill out their applications for an exchange year in the U.S. In theory, anything relevant — personal interests, family situations, allergies, and medical issues — should be disclosed through the application and interview process. The exchange world is full of stories, […]

Is a One Semester Exchange Right for You?

We had six one-semester students in our group this year, more than ever before. It seems like we have seen more interest in shorter exchanges over time. Some one-semester students come for the first half of the U.S. school year; some come for the second semester. Our bottom line, recommendation is that if you can […]

Scaring Exchange Students Straight

“Scared straight” programs were encouraged in the U.S. in the 1970s as a way of deterring juvenile crime. The idea was to show kids what prison looks like, and maybe they’ll decide “that’s not where I want to be.” Taking high school exchange students to visit your local prison probably doesn’t serve much purpose. But […]

Highlight of the Week – Nationality Unknown

My feature highlight for this week is Nationality Unknown, a blog and Facebook page focusing on the feelings and emotions faced by exchange students, long-term travelers, and expats. Amarens describes herself as “a 19-year-old Dutch girl with a passion for traveling, photography and languages.” She did an exchange when she was 16 and wants to […]

So What Do We Talk About With Your Exchange Students At the Beginning of the Year?

Practical Tips for Host Families (and Students, Too!) The U.S. government requires that J-1 visa high school exchange students have both pre-departure and post-arrival orientations. These meetings cover U.S laws, program rules and regulations, expectations for behavior, how to ensure students’ health and safety, and practical tips for success. We’ve been having our post-arrival welcome […]

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