“I came to St. Louis so that I could get to know a new culture and way of living,” said junior Nando Zothke, who is from Wolfsburg, Germany.
Moving to unfamiliar places is always an intriguing experience for anyone. Whether it be to a new city, state, or country, there’s always something unique to discover and grow from while interacting with the different people and places.
“I came to the USA on Aug. 3 of this year. I am only staying for one year as an exchange student. I have lived in Germany my whole life so moving to a new area was exciting and scary to me,” said Zothke.
The exposure to various kinds of food, people, and things to do in a new area allow for anyone to be easily fascinated. The contrast between Germany and St. Louis was both a captivating and intimidating experience for Zothke, but with help from his host parents, adapting to a new country became easier everyday.
“[St. Louis] is a big city and everyone looks so busy.” said Zothke. “I do not really like how lots of the food around here is fast food, but I guess that is what a big city is like. Almost two months ago, it was kind of intimidating to come here but I got used to it fast because of my host parents. They are volunteers from my exchange organization back in Germany so they are a big help.”
Although St. Louis may offer plenty of things to do, Zothke tends to stick with the things that are familiar to him, like his hobbies.
“Back in Germany I played soccer, which I am doing now, too. Other than soccer, I still do the same things like I did back home. I read, hang out with friends, and watch Netflix. Hopefully I’ll try some new things before I leave,” said Zothke.
Zothke plans on attending college in Europe. He is not sure of his career plans yet, but he hopes that his experiences while studying abroad will help him decide. As of right now, he only wishes to focus on learning about a new lifestyle in order to help him grow as a person.
“I’m excited to return to Germany after one year because I miss my family and friends. I feel like when I will be back at home, I will enjoy it more because I have been away for a long time. But at the end of my trip in the USA, I think I will probably say the same about this place. I meet a lot of nice people everyday and I am having fun here so who knows, maybe I will miss my friends here just as the ones back in Germany. I am eager to see how the rest of my time here goes,” said Zothke.
Sagar Samuel, Personality Perfectionist