One of the positions I hold at Harrisburg Academy is international student coordinator. During my time in this position, I have interviewed countless students from around the world, offered advice and assistance during their enrollment at the Academy, and shared my home with many. I enjoy learning more about the world around us and extending those opportunities to my family and our community.
In our school community, international students enrich our program in many ways — they offer a different perspective on our education system, they share their culture and experiences with our students, and they help show our students that the world is their oyster. We often speak about being “global” at the Academy, and the international students are a strong thread in the fabric of our global community.
Recently, one of our students, Marvin Waechter ’17 from Germany, returned for a visit and shared how his experience at Harrisburg Academy changed him. Marvin commented that he had the unique opportunity to grow close to his teachers and peers. He learned to ask for assistance and advocate for himself. He feels this was a great benefit to helping him be successful at the Academy and to carry that success back to his academic career in Germany.
“I realize that something changed when I went back to Germany in my old environment,” said Marvin. “I was more self-confident and ambitious in school. I learned how to use the library — in Germany, no one uses the libraries like we do here. School is easier back in Germany. It is bigger, but it got easier because my study habits and attitudes toward school changed.”
“I was organized before, but I became more organized,” Marvin continued. “The college prep class gave me more vision on my future, and I’m getting internships and interviews,” he said.
It is gratifying to hear that the international students who study at the Academy are able to use their experiences to benefit them when they return to their home country. They speak of being more open-minded and tolerant, but mostly that they are fully prepared to take advantage of opportunities around them. By sharing these experiences within our own community, our domestic students witness how travel can broaden horizons and develop them into more resilient and thoughtful individuals.
Learn more about Harrisburg Academy on our school website.