4,323 miles. That’s the distance three juniors will be traveling next month. They are leaving Nebraska for Lincoln Lutheran’s sister school, Drottningborg, in Norway for 20 days as a part of an exchange program. Along with going to Norway, they will be going to Rome with some Norwegian students.
Each year, three juniors are selected to go to Norway from those who apply. This year’s traveling juniors are Carol Nabity, Erika Smith, and Leah Stevens. When asked why she applied, Leah replied, “I applied because I thought it was an amazing opportunity to get to travel abroad and would be a fun and interesting experience to learn about other cultures and meet new people.” In order to be accepted, each applicant must fill out an application listing strengths, weaknesses, and how they react in different situations, among other things. They also have to collect numerous teacher evaluations. Mr. Bassett, who helps run the Norwegian exchange program, then sends the applications over to Norway where the final decision is made.
Once one has been accepted into the program, there are things he or she needs to do to prepare for the trip. When talking about preparations, Carol said, “I have started talking to all my teachers about homework. I also got my passport and a credit card with a chip inside.” Keeping up with school work while overseas can be overwhelming but Erika said, “I have been talking to teachers and getting ahead on some homework. We will also have time to do our school work while the Norwegians are in class.”
The trip to Norway isn’t all work though. When asked what she is looking forward to most, Leah said, “Meeting all of the new people and visiting neat places.” Carol is also looking forward to “experiencing the culture and trying all the new foods.” Paige Borcherding, a senior who went to Norway last year, would tell the voyaging juniors that “the best part of my trip was participating in the Russ celebration. I don’t want to spoil all of the activities they get to do but basically the Russ is when the third graders (or what we call seniors) celebrate their last year of high school. They celebrate by doing fun challenges while wearing super cool clothes that they can’t take off for an entire month.” Marita Vigmostad, a Norwegian exchange student, also has a bit of advice saying, “I would suggest going to the coast, up in the hills, and to see the small villages. Also. they should go to the restaurant HappyTime where they sell kebab pizzas!”
Although the trip can take some preparation, the juniors going to Norway are excited and ready. They are faced with a chance to travel around the globe and it’s definitely an opportunity they don’t want to pass up.