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Groton welcomed five exchange students to the Circle last month. Devang Ladha, Neharika Sharma, and Lakshita Jamwal are from India, while Sinyatti Laizer and Neema Mollel come from Tanzania. They are all in Fourth Form.

When asked about her first impression of the Circle, Neharika replied, “when Mr. Das drove me from the airport, he pointed out where Groton School land started and I remember thinking, ‘is it ever going to end?’ because it was so big.” Sinyatti remarked, “My first impression of Groton was great. The campus is absolutely beautiful, and the people were very nice and friendly towards me.”

Neharika and Lakshita have also observed many differences between Groton and their own school. For one, Groton offers more courses to choose from, and also presents more free time for students to do what they like. They added, “we also like how everything is so active around campus, especially the student body. Everyone seems to be involved, and we love that sense of inclusion.” The concept of Surprise Holiday also surprised the exchange students, but they certainly “enjoyed getting the chance to look around Boston.”

Devang commented on the differences in education systems: while his school separates classes for each grade, Groton gives him the opportunity to have classes with people from many different forms. “I think that’s great,” he said, “since I can have greater discussions and get an insight into diverse perspectives.” Furthermore, he noticed that the teacher-student meeting system is more flexible, saying, “I can walk in at any time to talk to teachers and it greatly increases efficiency.” While Devang used to play cricket back in India, he has picked up a completely new sport here, baseball. He also noted the difference in dorm size –– while the dorms in his old school had about a hundred people per dorm and four people in each room, Groton offers a much smaller, more intimate dorm setting.

All of our exchange students are enjoying different aspects of Groton. Neharika enjoys taking Biology and Chemistry, saying, “all of our teachers are really nice and very interactive.” She also loves playing lacrosse, since it’s a whole new experience. On the other hand, Neema’s favorite aspect of Groton is talking to all the people here. She adds, “they are all so nice and it’s great getting to know people from diverse cultures and backgrounds.” Devang loves precalculus class with Mr. Creamer, and enjoys history and English  “because of the great discussions we have and the diversity of opinions in the classroom.” He added that since he has never been in the United States before, this opportunity to come as an exchange student has helped him “get a sense of the culture and experience it firsthand.”

Our exchange students are leaving in June, and they all want to meet and interact with new people around the Circle. Devang exclaims, “the people here are nice, funny and very friendly. I really want to get to know more of the student body!” When you see them around campus, make sure to say hello and strike up a conversation!

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