Exchange Student Shares the Value of a Host Family’s Love and Support

At STS Foundation, we are proud to welcome the next generation of global citizens. To be an exchange student, it takes a special kind of young person to leave their home country and live in a foreign culture. Luckily, they have an amazing support system of host families, schools, and STS Foundation Local Coordinators waiting to welcome them. But living in a new country can be an adjustment, one that helps students to grow and mature throughout their time in the USA. Alba from Spain shares how her journey has been so far, and how she’s learned to embrace the experience.

Alba Codony Costa_HF Burkhardt

In the United States for three months now, Alba's exchange experience has been a dynamic journey of adaptation and growth thanks to the unwavering support of her host family. As Alba shared her story with us, it became evident that the love and encouragement from her host family have been the bedrock of her successful and fulfilling exchange year so far.

Reflecting on her initial days, Alba shared, "When I arrived, it was hard for me to adapt; the fact that at first everything is very cool and fun didn't seem like it to me. It was like a stroke of reality; I would no longer see my family and friends for the next 10 months, I was here alone." What Alba shared captures the emotional challenges that often accompany the beginning of an exchange journey.

In those crucial first weeks, Alba found solace and support within her host family. “The first few days I was a little sad, everything was too new. At 2 weeks everything began to improve, I was more and more adapted and happier to be here and able to live this experience.” Her host family served as a pillar of strength during this critical period, helping her navigate the newness and find joy in the experience.

Expressing gratitude, Alba acknowledges, “They were my point of support when I needed it, and I am very grateful to them, I love them very much.” This declaration underscores the profound impact a host family can have, providing not just a place to stay but a genuine connection that transcends borders.

Alba Codony Costa_HF Burkhardt (2)

As Alba's exchange journey progressed, so did her achievements. "My grades are great, I have finished the cycling season, I competed at the state level (against 106 girls) and I got the 5th position in JV." The unwavering support from her host family played a crucial role in her success, as they not only encouraged her but actively participated in her accomplishments, attending her competitions and races.

Alba's journey echoes a powerful message: the love and support of a host family are fundamental in shaping a positive and enriching exchange experience. Her story serves as an inspiring reminder of the transformative impact that familial bonds can have on an exchange student's life, creating a tapestry woven with love, encouragement, and shared experiences.

When you become a host family for an exchange student, you get to be part of the special group that changes these young people’s lives forever. And in return, you invite the world into your home and community! The special bond that is made between everyday American families and their international students is one that crosses oceans and stands the test of time. Discover for yourself why each year, thousands of families across the United States choose to become host families for foreign exchange students.

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Exchange Student Shares the Value of a Host Family’s Love and Support

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