As the school year ends, it is time to say good-bye to all the exchange students who spent their year here in Western PA. Amoung those returning home are ten of mine. June is a hard month for me!
I'm very proud of my group again this year! Poom and Pong (both nicknames, both from Thailand) participated in the Woodland Hills Musical "Curtains". Pong was both in the orchestra pit and on stage crew. The stage crew was a triple Kelly Awards recipient this year!!! Poom was up there singing and dancing his heart out on stage. I feel the pride of any parent for them!
Mai (also from Thailand) was the only girl in her Robotics class at Penn Trafford. She also took calculus and AP Physics, plus the "other" subjects, English and US History. She is a straight A student and wants to work for NASA as an aerospace engineer some day.
Gustavo (from Brazil) worked very hard at Mt. Lebanon High School and managed to find time to travel to other parts of the US, including Hawaii during his stay here. His host family wants to adopt him permanently (not allowed!)
I could go on. Lisa (from Germany) was active in the Chorus and International Club at Allderdice. Unfortunately laryngitis prevented her from singing at the spring concert. But it didn't keep her from attending and lip syncing so well that no one (specifically me) had a clue!
Now I'm in that difficult place of letting go of the ones returning home and searching for homes for the new ones coming. It always surprises me how difficult it is to find a new host family. I know it's a big committment and you have to love kids and have the space and all that... but it's such a wonderful experience. When all is said and done - what else did you do this year?
If you are still reading, please think about hosting a student this fall. Or think about anyone else you know who could enjoy a new adventure such as this. And then please call me, email me, send me a paper airplane with your phone number! A wonderful experience awaits! Thanks!