Students to participate in Spanish exchange program


Courtesy of Katie Courtney

Making special memories and meeting new people in Seville and Guadix are the two main factors of this annual trip.

Over spring break 2018, 25 students in the World Languages department will go on a trip to Spain to experience the culture of the country and further their development in the Spanish language. Later on, students from Spain will come to Hinsdale and spend a week with the same Central students who went to Spain.

The students will start their trip in the city of Seville, but after three days they will move on to different locations. This includes nearby cities like Granada and Guadix, as well as visits to historical sights and the local beach. The entire trip will last 11 days.

The first exchange experience happened during the spring of 2016 after Ms. Christine Brodell, Spanish teacher, planned the logistics with Padre Poveda High School in Gaudix.

Similar to the experience from 2016, after the return of the students, their Spanish partners will then come and stay in the homes of the Central students for a week. The Spanish partners will be able to experience life as a teenager in the U.S., as they will take tour of the school, visit Wrigley Field, and take visits to popular Chicago museums.

“I learned to be a lot more independent and made friends with lots of unique people. I also improved greatly in my Spanish skills, and I got first hand experience on how Spanish people normally live,” said Andrius Espinoza, senior, who participated in last year’s trip.

The students who will attend this year are either in Spanish 2 or a more advanced Spanish class. They are also all completely new, as students from previous years are not allowed to come back due to the constant demand for new students.

Students from past years have been open about their experiences on the trip and do not regret their decision to travel abroad.

“After going on the trip I met lifelong friends, and learned a lot of things about myself that I previously wouldn’t have learned had I not gone on this exchange,” said Katie Courtney, junior, who participated in last year’s trip.

The special relationships created during this exchange are described as long lasting, and to this day the students still keep in touch.

“To be able to understand another teenagers world is so special. We are so different but so the same,” said Ms. Brodell, sponsor of the trip. “We speak a different language and have a different interpretation, but we are the same in that we both use Snapchat, Instagram, and we experience the same problems.”