Exchange stories | Xander – Saint Cloud – USA

Let’s go Huskies, let’s go!

This is what comes to my mind first when I think of the semester I spent abroad. It’s the number one cheering song you hear on campus when the sports teams (called the Huskies) play their games and it characterizes what for me was one of the most valuable experiences of my life: the American campus life. This life has such a strong image that I’ve always found myself very much attracted to spending some time in The States, so when I got the question of where I wanted to go for the exchange program I pointed all arrows on the USA. I just had to experience all the prejudices and rumours about Americans myself and quite frankly it has been the best choice of my life to really do so.

Saint Cloud is a city that mainly consists of students, so when I arrived in August literally every corner of the street had one BBQ-party going on. From moment one, every single door was open for my international friends and me. The level of openness, friendliness and kindness meant a very pleasant surprise and were the foundation of true friendships with local, real Americans. Friendships that made me be part of Thanksgiving celebrations at families’ homes, that drove me through whole states just to have a good time, showed me beautiful lakes (as Minnesota is known as ‘The land of 10.000 lakes’), and that have cooked meals every week before hitting the bars. Those friendships I’m sure will last for a very long time provided me with contacts that will always give opportunities in the future.

Besides lessons I learned about cultural differences, I also had the opportunity to travel around the United States and visited places like Phoenix and the Grand Canyon and I planned a road trip with a German friend to Las Vegas. The impressions I still have vividly in my memories contribute to the most inspiring and enriching experience of my life.