Q & A with the Australian Exchange Students
By: Carly Wellener
This past November and December, sophomores Hannah Selhorst, Emma Picht and myself hosted three students from Ravenswood School in Sydney, Australia for five weeks. Hannah hosted Ali Westmore, Emma hosted Liv Hagglund and I hosted Georgia Byers. During their last week of school, I had the pleasure of asking them a few questions about their experiences here at the Hath and around the U.S.:
Is the U.S. more similar or more different than what you expected?
Ali: I think it is more similar because I’ve seen all these movies and all these T.V. shows and I feel like a knew a bit about America, so I think it was pretty similar but some aspects were a bit different. Still most of it was pretty similar to what I thought it would be.
Liv: I think it was really very different because I think, like, the movies and stuff are a bit stereotypical and I feel like this was a bit more similar to our lives.
Georgia: Yeah, I thought it was more similar to our lives in Australia than what I actually thought.
Ali: But I think that’s because of the type of area we are in and like the school we go to. Like if we went to a different school I feel like it’d be heaps different.
What do you think of HB?
Georgia: Ah, love it! Love the people, love the teachers they’re so nice and I feel like they’re really easy to talk to.
Ali: The teachers are incredible, like you guys are so lucky to have such nice teachers. They’re so nice and, like, really good at teaching.
Liv: And everyone is very welcoming. It was so easy to make friends.
Ali: Oh! And the food is so good, I freaking love the cafeteria.
What do you think of the CLE aka Cleveland?
Liv: I like Cleveland, I think it’s like really spread out with lots of room.
Georgia: Its very different to Sydney, which I liked.
Ali: Didn’t really like Cleveland city as much, but I liked Cleveland suburbs. Yeah, I liked the suburban area a lot more than I liked the actual city. I feel like there are kind of, no offence, bigger and better cities. But the suburbs are really cute and nice and loved that kind of area.
What were your favorite classes here?
Ali: Photo and sculpture
Liv: Yeah and I also liked U.S. History.
Ali: Yeah loved history, loved Mr. Hoffman. Like he’s current and old and I love it! And it’s really informative and interesting learning about slaves and the Civil War.
Liv: Oh and Global Scholars, loved Global Scholars!
Ali: Oh, loved Global scholars. It was really interesting like you were actually learning stuff and I was like hanging on to every single word like “Oh my goodness what happened!!??”
What is the weirdest thing that is different about the U.S.?
Georgia: THE FOOD, you put cheese on everything!!
Ali: Yeah you guys put cheese on everything. Oh my God I’m so over cheese, like, I’ve had an excessive amount of cheese.
Georgia: I don’t think I’ll want to eat any more for a while. And what’s that like bright yellow cheese?
Liv: Hmm also slang is weird.
Ali: Like what is “ratchet?”
What are the funniest questions that you’ve been asked?
Liv: “Do you use deodorant?”
Georgia: “Do you speak English” or like “Do you speak another language in Australia?”
Ali: “Do you play sports in Australia?”
Georgia: “Do you know what Snapchat is?”
Ali: And like so many people think we are English. And everyone like imitates us as English it’s so funny. Oh and your attitude towards England is very weird. Like some one asked me if Australia was “possessed” by England. Like no were not possessed by England, were part of the Commonwealth but no possessed. You guys have a really aggressive attitude towards England, it’s really weird. Like most of you have moved on [from the Revolutionary War] but some people are just still really aggressive towards England.
How did you like all the snow?
Liv: Ah, loved it!
Ali: Yeah it was so fun, the snow made everything better.
Liv: Oh except we couldn’t go to somethings because of it, like Niagara Falls which was sort of annoying.
Ali: Yeah, but the snow was nice because if it’s gonna be cold might as well have some snow.
Georgia: It was fascinating because we don’t really see snow where we live.
Ali: It was, like, weird because we see in ski places but never really like at school or out in front of our house.
What is your favorite memory from the exchange?
Ali: Ooh, that’s a hard one. Hmm, I’d probably go with going to the Buckeye’s game, that was so much fun. It was like the classic American thing to do. Oh and also Niagara Falls, that was really cool.
Georgia: Umm, I don’t know, there’s too many! Hmm, I don’t know I mean it’s all a memory so I can’t really choose.
Liv: Yeah, I really liked school and also in Washington D.C. I really liked the Lincoln Memorial.
Georgia: Oh yeah that was really cool.
Ali: And Thanksgiving! Ahh the apple pie was so good.
How sad are you to be leaving?
Georgia: So sad, I’m really sad to be leaving everyone because we’ve made some really good friends while we’ve been here so it’s kinda sad.
Liv: Yeah, same.
Ali: But I’m also equally excited to go home and get back to summer, you know? Like to see my family and stuff but I’m still sad.
I highly recommend that current freshman apply to be apart of this great exchange! First you go over the summer and stay in Sydney, Australia and go to school and then the girl you stayed with comes to the U.S. It’s an amazing experience and opportunity you should all consider!