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SHS TRAVELS THE GLOBE

Sandpoint students Kohal, Buckhout and England share about their adventures abroad

Mason White, Web Staff

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England stands on a bridge in Amsterdam.

While traveling to or living in a foreign country may be a goal for most people, we usually picture it as something that might happen later in our life. For SHS students Aaron Cole and Tanner Kohal, it’s something they chose to do during their junior year of high school.

For their foreign exchanges, Cole was able to spend his time in Oldenburg, Germany while Kohal spent his time in Herrljunga, Sweden. Kohal comments that the biggest difference in the culture in Sweden is that strangers are a lot less forward than what he’s used to here at home.

“When you’re on the train or a bus, people would rather stand, than sit directly next to each other,” he said. “It was hard to get used to the fact that making conversation with strangers just isn’t something you do.”

However, he also added that once you are introduced to someone in a more familiar environment, everyone was always very kind and open. Kohal appreciated the fact that the great majority of Swedes are extremely informed about general information.

Especially environmental problems, “They recycle everything instead of just throwing it away and they use alternative energy sources,” he said.

For this school year, Logan Buckhout and Christina McClelland are spending their year abroad through the Rotary Youth Exchange program. For their junior year, McClelland is in Taiwan, while Buckhout is in Haderslev, Denmark. Izzy England is another student who is studying abroad this year.

However, her year isn’t going to be quite as stationary. She is travelling through the organization, “Class Afloat.” England, along with about 40 other students will spend their year on a 300 foot sail boat on the Atlantic Ocean, stopping in port at 22 different countries.

When in port, students and staff will spend three to five days in the cities filing their time with “unique and life-changing activities, including local cultural experiences, visits to important historic sites, voluntary service projects and activities such as hiking, snorkeling and surfing,” the website states. England will take her basic classes along with sail training and day/night watch shifts.

An experience very unique to most exchange years. Nonetheless, no matter where students go or what they’re experiences are like, they’re sure to come back with a whole new mindset and plenty of stories to share.

Although foreign exchange programs may not always be in everyone’s interest or budget, travel is an extremely great way to broaden your horizons.

With it comes an abundance of education: whether it be cultural or even about yourself or those you travel with.

There are plenty of ways you can work your way through the expenses of traveling.

If it’s something you’re really interested in, there will always be opportunities if you look hard enough.

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