Beau Larson – Minnesota
I’m Beau Larson and I come from a small country in northern Minnesota only about an hour away form Canada. The main town is Grand Marais and it is located right on Lake Superior. It’s a major fishing and logging town. It is also a very touristy town in the summer. I live right outside of the town about a 20 minutes drive.
The actual town has a population of about 1,300 people so it was a major change moving to Wellington for a foreign exchange.
I decided to come to Wellington and New Zealand in general because of all the good things I have heard. When the idea of participating in an exchange program, New Zealand wasn’t the first place I had in mind. But after talking with people that have been to New Zealand, I couldn’t pass it up. They said it was one of the most beautiful places in the world, and since I’ve been here I can already tell they weren’t lying.
Coming to a school five times larger than my own was a big change. But it wasn’t hard to get used to because students and teachers alike were and are very kind and made me feel welcome. So far Wellington has been a great place to live. My host family is great and made me feel part of their family right away. I’m sure it wasn’t hard for them since they are also hosing a student from Germany also with seven other kids that are living in the house. So far, Wellington has been a blast to live in.
The locals are very nice and fun people to be around. I plan to take a few trips around most of New Zealand to get the whole experience. I encourage any students that are thinking about an exchange program to look into New Zealand because the people are great and it’s a beautiful place to be.
Comment from Dad and Mom from Minnesota:
“The Transition from a small rural community school in northern Minnesota to Wellington High School was relatively seamless. I found the U.S. liaison contact (Nigel) and the WHS administration effective in informing us all necessary transfer requirements including identifying students needs once they arrive. In addition, in an era that can often be bogged down by bureaucracy and paper work, the required forms and applications were not over bearing. Our 16 year old had a wonderful experience-one with life long memories and with a hopeful return someday soon.”