Exchange students return from Germany with tales of an icy winter
The Namibian learners who visited Germany over the Christmas holiday as exchange students, this week shared their individual experiences with members of the German Embassy in Windhoek and representatives of the Association of German School Societies (AGDS).
At a small reception, seven of the ten students related their impressions of the country, its people and the German culture. All exchange students must take German as a school subject. The exchange programme is modelled to enhance the academic exposure by placing the participating students with German families where they live as a member of the family for about two and half months.
The German Ambassador, HE Christian Schlaga said the student exchange programme is an important tool to foster mutual understanding among students. “There is nothing more beautiful than the exchange between young people. Namibian and German students are afforded the opportunity to learn the language as well as to get to know the countries of their exchange partners, having new and exciting experiences along the way.”
One of the exchange students, Sebastian van Niekerk of St Pauls in Windhoek, spoke on behalf of the 2017/18 group telling the Ambassador how much he enjoyed his stay in Berlin.
The Association of German School Societies, helped by the organisation, German Cultural Relations Abroad, has been running the exchange programme for many years. Among today’s Namibian leaders, there are many who gave their first tentative step into a bigger, international world, as an exchange student to Germany.
Exchange students are hosted by German families where they also attend school together with the German children. The latest group returned from Germany in mid-January, enriched by many impressions as well as excellent German language skills. All exchange students have to reciprocate the privilege by hosting a German learner. This happens from June to September.
Captured at a celebration earlier this week to celebrate the return of the latest group of Namibian exchange students to Germany, are from the left, Mrs Silke Bergemann (AGDS), Mrs. Monika Hoffmann (AGDS), Alina Niipare, Mr. Hanjo Böhme (AGDS), Pekakarna Karamata, HE Christian Schlaga (German Ambassador), Cameron Lohmann, Danzille Strauss and Sebastian van Niekerk.