BY ABIGAIL PERSUAD
Student enrolled in the French and Arts programs took advantage of the “Art in France” program to take a trip to France. During the month of March, students went on a foreign exchange trip to immerse themselves in the French language and culture.
They began their trip to the south of France with a 7-hour flight. “The plane ride there made the trip start out exhausting, but the rest of the fun made up for it,” sophomore Ava Gross shared.
A French host family connected to the foreign exchange program provided each student with a place to stay for the week and made them feel welcome. “My host family experience was amazing, and I became very close with them,” senior Mary Rosek said. “From the get-go they were extremely welcoming and loving, and they made me feel at home right away.”
The students got to see the difference between American and European school systems. “Their high school is more like college in the United States,” Rozek explained. “They typically have 2-hour classes, and then they will have about an hour break in between classes. During this break, they can leave the school’s campus.”
Students also had the opportunity to connect with people their own age while attending school in France. “We hung out with one of the kids from the gym class at a cafe and then everyone (the English kids and French kids and other friends we made) went bowling,” Gross said.
Experiencing France’s wonders firsthand served as one of the highlights of the trip. “We went on some tours around different cities in the south of France, including the town Vincent Van Gogh lived in where he drew inspiration for the Starry Night!” exclaimed senior Mariam Ghattas.
This trip also gave the students the opportunity to taste the culture as well. “I tried quiche, raclette, pain du chocolate, and more,” Rosek said. “I had the opportunity to also make crêpes from scratch with my host family!” Cooking and eating food in France helped students create more of a bond with the country.
The 2023 French trip was a success for everyone who had the privilege of going on it, and it served as an opportunity for students to put to use the language they study in school.
Posted on 3/31/23
Photos provided by Harpreet Malhi