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"You get to live with a host family so that you’re really in the culture, not just viewing the culture from a tourist point of view."
– Fiona Oweke, CBYX Alumna
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Connecting in Germany

Ty B. of Pennsylvania, is a CBYX 2016 – 2017 participant hosted in Moerfelden-Walldorf, Germany. Ty describes what has meant the most to his time in Germany thus far. Above: Ty (back right) with his German classmates.

If there was one word to describe my experience so far in Germany, it would be “connecting”. Coming from a small town in south-western Pennsylvania, I used to think that traveling the world, experiencing a new culture, trying new things, and learning a new language were somewhat unthinkable concepts; something that no one would dream of.

Yet here I am, doing just that, and it’s amazing. I’ve been asked a lot about what my favorite moment so far in Germany is, or what is really special for me here. Even for this reflection, I thought about the moments I’ve had here. Picking a “special” moment from my time in Germany -- be it socializing with my friend, working to improve my German, or knowing that I have become a part of my host family-- is a hard choice to make. Each moment here is special; each day unique in its own way. And that’s the excitement of being an exchange student: you know you only have a certain amount of time here, so you try to do as much as you can and make as many memories and connections as possible before you leave.

Meeting new people, not just from Germany, but other exchange students from around the world has been one of my favorite experiences here. Hearing others' stories and becoming friends with them is something I’ve dreamed of since I was a kid. After meeting all these people and enjoying these unique experiences, you start to realize how big the world really is. I have found that people can differ greatly from one another, but at the end of the day, I fully believe that you can always find a way to connect.

I hope my last months here in Germany will be as thrilling as the rest have been!

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