A Man from Accross the World Somewhere

Dear Thornton Donovan,

Several months ago my school told me about a possible exchange with a school just outside New York City. At first I was not so sure because I thought it might interrupt my studies. But as the time for the trip got closer and closer my anticipation grew, I gave into the hype and could not wait to see just how large, diverse and rich the culture was here. And now finally being here and having done so much in the past couple of weeks I feel that I have not even scratched the surface of what this country and this school can teach me.

In these past weeks, everyone I have met has been helpful and friendly, I have found that the teachers are great at what they do, and what drew me into their classes was that this school dose things differently than at home, the classes were a pleasant surprise because they were so different, such as arctic architecture, ology’s and isms, and skyrockets (etc..). These classes have wetted my appetite for these topics and I was generally interested each time I entered the classroom. But there are still aspects that Thornton Donovan and The Corelli School have in common, one of them being the overall atmosphere of uniqueness, not only in what each school stands for (internationality or the arts) but the students as well, everyone can be themselves without being judged, each person excels in some areas and struggle in others, and with the sup- port of the teachers and the students they can overcome these struggles. The small classes create a more focused atmosphere where the students can actually get to know their teacher and vice versa, making learning easier for the student. Outside of the classroom the overall atmosphere of friendship follows. I only wish that I could be here longer so that I can fully get to know everyone here. I am glad to say that I have made friendships here that will continue back home.

I personally have been staying with the Wests and I will say that they have been amazing, we New Zealanders all agree that the families that we have stayed with have made us feel like one of the family and at home.

The places, events and shows we have seen in these past three weeks have been enlightening and inspiring, as well as highly entertaining. We have had the full tourist experience; we have gone to Central Park, Rockefeller Centre, Times Square, Broad- way, the Empire State Building, the Brooklyn Bridge, we have been to the Guggenheim, The Museum of Modern Art and The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Going to these museums was fulfilling because being able to actually see world famous art in front of you is much deeper than you would expect. Like the starry night by Van Gogh.

During our stay here we have gone to many shows that have been highly beneficial to us Kiwis because our school embraces the performing arts and thanks to this ex- change we have seen great examples of them, the string quartets and orchestras were beautiful, the dance shows were elegant, and the musicals were breath-taking. It is amazing how much is going on in the city, during our walks through the city streets we found bands playing, a diner with singing staff, jazz clubs, and hotdog stands as far as the eye can see. I cannot thank this school enough for what it has done for us here, not for one second did I feel that we were not welcome here. Even though it has only been three weeks, I know that this experience will stay with me for the rest of my life. Thank you.

The Students of the Corelli International Academic School of the Arts
Benjamin Selfe, Jessica Selfe and Astrid TJahyono