Kelowna Secondary School prides itself on the cultural and ethnic diversity that we have. Students from around the world come on exchanges each year to learn about canadian culture and to experience life in Canada. These students are enriching their lives by going on this experience and while they do this they are enriching local students lives too. Even though the experience of travelling and studying abroad is so enriching, many students choose not to take part in an experience. These reasons can vary from person to person but there are many genuine reasons why not to go an exchange.
You don’t have the money
Student exchange opportunities are usually extremely pricey making them inaccessible with most. Fundraising can be very stressful and often takes a long time which makes making payment deadlines hard.
You don’t know where to go
One of the problems with student exchanges is choosing where to go. Not all schools have many options and maybe you’ve been there before and were looking for a completely new experience and the whole application process is complicated as well.
You don’t like to travel
Flying and the thought of being in another country is scary and maybe you don’t feel at ease leaving your comfort zone. On top of that, most people have commitments and jobs that they don’t want to just leave for a few months of studying abroad. And if you do choose to do so, coming home and finding yourself without a job or ambitions can be difficult.
You don’t know how to speak another language
Learning another language is hard especially in high school once you’re well developed into your first language. A second language can be helpful but when it comes to applying for college and/or future career opportunities, you can be just as successful without it.
You don’t have friends or any peer support
Leaving home and arriving as a foreign student in a different country can be very challenging on its own, but being alone on top of that it can make it unbearable and unenjoyable. Separation anxiety and missing family members/close friends from home can also come into play.
As daunting as it may be to travel and experience a new culture by going on an exchange, most of the time it is an educational and unforgettable experience.