Congratulations to Joshua Beerwinkel, one of our Grade 11s, who leaves for the USA today. After a stringent selection process Joshua was selected for a cultural scholarship offered by the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study Programme (KL YES).
He will be based in Herriman, Utah with a host family, for 10 months and will be attending Providence Hall High School as a Junior, which is equivalent to our Grade 11.
Joshua applied through Pinelands High School and AFS Intercultural, an international, non-profit organisation that offers learning opportunities through youth exchange.
Some words from Joshua:
I didn’t expect to be accepted for the scholarship, but after a number of interviews and meetings it became more believable. I applied because I wanted the experience of living in a completely different environment and being exposed to a different culture which will help me to become more understanding and open-minded. I expect the first few months away from family, friends and everything familiar to be very difficult, but this will force me to adapt.
I am expected to do a set number of hours of community service and perform well academically during my time in America but, given that it is a cultural exchange, my goal is ultimately to meet people and learn their culture whilst sharing mine. I plan to appreciate every moment of this exchange and learn as much as possible, and have no doubt in my mind that I will come back a better person. This experience is a once in a lifetime opportunity and I intend to make use of it by spending every moment learning, sharing and just enjoying cultures. I’m really excited to have this experience!
Pinelands High School wishes Joshua everything of the best as he jets off on his adventure.
We know that he will continue to make us proud and impeccably represent his school and country with ease and grace. Go well Joshua!