Student exchange offers cultural challenges

Ashwini SaseedaranSouth Western Times
Bunbury Cathedral Grammar Student Mehala Ward has returned from an exchange student trip to Reunion Island.
Camera IconBunbury Cathedral Grammar Student Mehala Ward has returned from an exchange student trip to Reunion Island. Credit: Jon Gellweiler / South Western Times

Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School offers a variety of education opportunities to its students including the La Reunion Student Exchange program.

The reciprocal exchange is a multi-faceted learning program where students from Reunion Island and Western Australia are matched and host each other to immerse themselves in another language and culture.

Students share cultural backgrounds, learn differences and similarities and create avenues for self-growth and understanding of others.

School head of languages Debra Tunnington said the program was popular among students studying French.

“Not only do students improve their French, they are able to experience blended and varied cultures and communities that exist there, from Creole to Indian, Chinese, African and French,” Mrs Tunnington said.

Mehalah Ward, Year 12 student studying French at Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School, who recently returned from this trip of a lifetime to Reunion Island, told South Western Times the experience has upped her confidence.

Year 12 student Mehalah Ward, who recently returned from this trip of a lifetime to Reunion Island, told the South Western Times the experience had boosted her confidence.

“I’ve learnt to push myself out there and into situations where I don’t necessarily feel comfortable,” Mehalah said.

“I’ve made really good friends. I have all of their Snapchats!”

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