Life in the U.S. / Thank You Thursdays

Thank You Thursday – February 25, 2016

Chiara and her host sister Barbara

Chiara and her Belgian host sister Barbara

Aspect Foundation’s inbox is flooded with notes from students expressing their gratitude for the experience they have had on student exchange. On Thursdays, we post one of these notes, sharing the “warm fuzzies” with all of you!

Today’s Thank You Thursday is from Chiara from Italy, living in Colorado.

A special exchange year in Colorado

I just had to find the courage, fill my suitcase with as many clothes as I could, pick up my passport, and fly across the ocean.

It wasn’t easy to be a 17-year-old girl and make the decision to be an exchange student. I had to get out of what is called the “comfort zone” and put myself to the test. But now, after having been here for a while, I never want it to end.

If I think about this experience, the first thing I want to say is that it’s been challenging. There are aspects that are completely new. I had to learn how to approach and deal with them.

But I am surrounded by extraordinary people who make every day a special day for me and I will never be able to thank them enough.

You cannot take your host family for granted as they are volunteers and made the decision to embrace you in their family from a strong feeling of philanthropy and altruism.

The Colorado community that I’m in is one of the best parts of this experience. You can walk along the street and stop to chat with a neighbor, or buy a coffee and share a table with another customer you just met.

People are nice and kind, and every smile I receive from them, whether I know them personally or not, warms my heart.

I am off to a good start and I hope I make the most of the year.

Chiara from Colorado (and Italy)

Chiara and her host sister Barbara enjoy their first American Christmas

Chiara and her host sister Barbara enjoy their first American Christmas