Foreign Friends


This school year Riverbend is home to four foreign exchange students. Laura Quattrini from Switzerland, Signe Stenstrop from Denmark, Tessa Ozebek and Victor Cichotzki, both from Germany.

As one can assume, America is different from the European countries that these students are from. “Being in America is different than Switzerland. It’s a cultural shock at the beginning, but I got used to it,” said Quattrini. The students agree that adjusting to the American life style was difficult, but they don’t regret their decision to visit and learn here this year. Ozebek said, “It’s different, not bad, not better, just different. I miss my home and my family, but I’ve gotten used to it here for the most part.” Riverbend teachers seem to enjoy being able to learn about the student’s cultures as well as teaching them ours. Frau Mades, the Riverbend German teacher, said, “It’s great! My students get to speak German with them.”

Foreign exchange students are a privilege to have at Riverbend. It’s a learning experience for both sides and an opportunity to meet new friends.