Nakira McGaw (Year 13) has just returned from Denmark where she attended our partner school - Rungsted Gymnasium - for three weeks. This is a new initiative for Selwyn College. Next year, Rungsted Gymnasium are sending ten students to Selwyn and we hope a lot more of our students will go there in return.
At the start of April, I went on a three week student exchange to Copenhagen, Denmark. It was a short but amazing experience! I stayed with a family of four consisting of my host mum and dad (Jane and Heina) and two siblings, who were a sister named Sisse and a brother named Rasmus. My house was only a five minute bike ride away from my new high school Rungsted Gymnasium which made it an easy journey to get to school. It was a shock to find that they went to elementary school from six to sixteen and then went to high school from seventeen to twenty. Due to this, they were very mature and the teachers treated the students like equals.
The thing that intrigued me the most was the culture shock. They have many different traditions throughout the year such as giving bread to one another, hanging your child’s pacifier on a tree in exchange for a gift, and my favourite which is dancing around a Christmas tree at Christmas. The people I met were so open and kind-hearted. They were the happiest bunch ever when the sun finally came out after a long winter. Everyone was ecstatic and joyful since it signals the beginning of Summer.
I met other exchange students from Slovakia, Miami, India, Venezuela (and many more places) that I became great friends with. They showed me all their favourite things to do and what they loved the most about this beautiful place. I was taken to many sights such as castles, beaches, beautiful European city centres and amusement parks. Not only that but Sweden was a thirty minute boat ride away. You could see it right across the ocean which amazed me as our closest country is a four hour plane ride away. It astonished me to see how strong their economy is as a result of their high taxes. For example I only saw two homeless people in the city, there very little litter on the roads, low crime rates, free education and free health care. I made life- time friends that I plan to see again and it was an incredible eye-opener to see what is really out there in the world and how different two countries can be. I had the time of my life and would thoroughly recommend the experience as I think you will never forget it.