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It's a Whole New World for Foreign Exchange Students

Visitors from German, Japan share their culture — and their reaction to ours — as they start school in Muskego.

Sumire Terai was so nervous prior to the Muskego-Norway School Board meeting that she needed a moment before she had her picture taken.

Arriving in the United States from Japan seven weeks ago, the 16-year-old AFS exchange student has had a lot to absorb in her new American city.

"I appreciate the help from students and teachers because sometimes it's hard to understand English in class," Terai said in introducing herself and answering questions from the board Monday night.

Soren Alrutz of Germany had the same impressions.

"I haven't missed too much from home yet, because people have been so kind, and I've enjoyed my classes," he said.

Each student stays with a host family for the school year, and will complete their high school requirements once they return to their respective countries, but while they are here, they are soaking up what Muskego has to offer.

"I feel there is more technology offered in school here," Alrutz said. He hoped to go on to be an engineer or a career in computer technology.

Terai also hoped to gain a great experience here, and although she said she "missed rice," she has also "liked Culver's and cheeseburgers a lot." She has her sites set on becoming a doctor when she enters college.

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