Visiting from Spain: Paola Gomez
Q. Where are you from?
A: “I am from Spain, in Madrid.”
Q. Why did you decide to become an exchange student?
A: “I wanted to experience an American year of high school, and I also wanted to improve my language.”
Q. What do you miss most about Spain?
A. “Probably the food and my family, and the freedom that I have there.”
Q. What has been the biggest challenge for you coming here?
A. “COVID[-19]. To not have the full experience makes me so sad.”
Q. What has been the easiest thing for you to adapt to here?
A. “I mean I didn’t really have problems with English when I came, so understanding people probably.”
Q. What is the weirdest thing you’ve found here that American’s do?
A. “Weirdest? Crocs with socks. It’s so weird.”
Q. What’s one thing you love or hate most about Virginia?
A. “I love how it’s so green and all the nature here.”
Q. If you could choose to stay here or go back to Spain, which would you choose?
A. “I would choose to study and to stay here, but I wish my family could be here with me. But yeah, I would choose to be here.”
Q. What was one thing you expected to learn or see in America? Did you learn it?
A. “I wanted to experience homecoming and prom for example, and we didn’t have that so…”
Q. Has it been difficult for you doing exchange during COVID?
A. “Yeah, for sure. I really didn’t know it was going to be like this, it was hard at first. At Christmas and everything, it was hard.”
Q. Would you ever be an exchange student again?
A. “Maybe not an exchange student because they have a lot of rules, but maybe come later for university or something for college.”
Q. What’s been your favorite part about the whole experience?
A. “My friends and meeting new friends. American football for example and the games and doing cheerleading too.”
Q. What’s the biggest cultural difference between here and Spain?
A. “Probably the food, mainly for sure.”