In it for the Ride

From Germany to Columbia, Students Come to Albert Lea

Traveling over the Gulf of Mexico or even the Pacific Ocean to a foreign country. Not seeing your friends or family for months and being introduced into a totally different society.
Receiving foreign exchange students has become a sort of tradition here at Albert Lea High School. Students traveling from all around the world come to experience new things and new cultures. This year’s lucky winners are Fabian Mueller from Germany and Felipe Arciniegas from Colombia.
Felipe Arciniegas, junior, traveled over Mexico and its gulf. Arciniegas says he decided to be a foreign exchange student so he could improve his English and to learn more about American culture. Fabian Mueller, junior traveled over the Pacific Ocean to arrive in his new home. Mueller was excited yet nervous about coming to ALHS. Mueller unlike Arciniegas did not choose his destination but was excited and anxious to come to Minnesota.
“I was very happy to come here but a little bit sad because I [won’t] see my family and close friends anymore.” Mueller said, “I was just excited.”
In the few months they have been here they are enjoying the friendliness of the people and the school. Mueller and Arciniegas both have that “what’s next” attitude and are excited to see the new experiences Albert Lea and ALHS will bring.
Arciniegas and Mueller have both noticed differences from their home countries to the US. One being how the students are the ones going to the teachers not the other way around. Arciniegas also says not many teenagers drive cars in Colombia.
“America is special,” Mueller says.
Meeting new people, new home, new everything is like traveling to a whole new country. That’s exactly what Felipe and Fabian did; take a chance and come to lovely Minnesota. Both from different backgrounds, different heritages, in search for an adventure to see where life takes them, and wonder what’s next.