A Foreign Exchange

Reported By: Monique Camacho

Attending school in an unfamiliar country sounds terrifying to most people. But not for Baba Minako, despite the differences, Minako is adapting very well to America. “ It’s different but I’m really enjoying it,” Minako stated.

There are some things Minako would change about the schools here in America, “I really enjoyed wearing a uniform in Japan; not wearing one is taking some getting used to,” Minako commented. However, Baba prefers some things in America more than in Japan. For instance, in Japan, they are prohibited from taking their phones to school and must leave them at home. “I plan on savoring being able to keep my phone with me at school, especially since I’m so far from home,” Minako stated.

One of Minako’s favorite traits of America is its food. “ I prefer American food over Japanese food, with Japanese food it’s mainly vegetables and rice; with American food, it’s mainly fast food,” Minako continued, “My favorite American food is cheeseburgers.” Minako is very pleased with having a cafeteria at Madison, unlike in Japan. At Minako’s old school she had no cafeteria and relied on taking her own food for lunch. Instead of eating in a cafeteria, Minako would eat in a classroom, known as a homeroom in Japan.

Currently, Minako is participating in a homestay and is enjoying her time with the family. “The family I’m staying with is very kind to me; they make me feel very welcomed,” Minako stated. Minako has only been here for 2 months but is so excited to be feeding into her yen.

Minako is currently a Junior and plans to continue to study English in America for the rest of this school year. “I chose to come to America because I love the culture, it’s my dream to live here one day,” said Minako. Minako took much preparation by studying English for about 5 years and can finally build on her skill by communicating with Americans and immersing in America’s culture. Maybe one day Minako will come to live in America as a citizen.

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