Going Places

My Exchange to Vienna
 
In December 2015 I embarked on an international exchange from Baradene College in Auckland, New Zealand to Gymnasium Sacré Coeur in Vienna.
 
I really enjoyed the whole experience, having the opportunity to live in not only another family but in another country and culture was life changing. It really opened up my views and made me more confident and open minded. 
 
In school it was interesting to the see the different ways people learn. I was surprised to find that school in Vienna was more formal than in New Zealand and the students study more subjects and study very hard. I made many friends in my classes and enjoyed going out with them after school and in the weekend.
 
I was lucky to do several interesting day trips including Salzburg and Bratislava in Slovakia.  Seeing these smaller cities filled with historical architecture and set in the beautiful winter landscape was unforgettable. I also experienced ice skating outdoors while it was snowing and was treated to a traditional Austrian Christmas by my host family. The highlight of my trip was probably attending a Viennese ball with my host sisters.
 
My host family the Sovegjartos were the best. I felt very warmly welcomed into their large family. There were 5 siblings so I always had someone to talk to and I enjoyed going out with each of them to experience new things. It was great to see my host sister Theresa again (Theresa stayed with our family and attended Baradene in May/June 2015). 
 
I would recommend any Sacré Coeur students to take up the life changing opportuntity to do an international exchange. You will make connections across the globe and it will be an eye opening experience that you will never forget!
 
Kate Hillman, Baradene College of the Sacred Heart, Auckland, NZ
 
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