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The Global Student Exchange Programme 2015: What the Boys Say?

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Posted on : July 13, 2015

Each year about a third of the S form (Class 11) boys go on exchange to the school’s peer group of schools world-wide. The majority of them are boarding schools who are in membership of HMC or the IBSC.

From the 2015 group these are some reports back to school. They include feedback from parents, student exchange co-ordinators and host families:

Ananay Sethi from Oberoi House talking about his exchange to Landheim Schondorf, Germany in 2015:

‘I would like to once again express my gratitude for selecting me to go for this wonderful exchange programme to Germany.
Landheim Schondorf has treated me really well, and I still cannot believe that two weeks have passed by so fast. I fell in love with the school and the people almost instantly and they befriended me really fast. Language, fortunately, is no hindrance here as my German is enough for informal talk, and I have been able to sincerely study with the help of the teachers who are kind enough to explain to me certain things in English that I cannot understand, and so do my friends.

The school is very liberal, and offers a plethora of activities to do after classes, and everything here is easily available. The school also takes sports as seriously as our school does, and it holds a vital role in a “Landheimer’s” life. I currently am taking part in the Culture Worksop.

The Cycling Activity, The Basketball, Hockey and Badminton Activities, the Drum Workshops and also some spare some time from the busy schedule of the day to play the Tabla.

The campus is beautiful and awe inspiring, and the city is a quaint little village next to the beautiful Ammersee lake, where most of us with our friends go to hang out after a full day’s work.

The hostels are very comfortable, and they have their own common rooms and kitchens, which is very similar to Doon, and gives you a feeling that you are just back home.

In a nutshell- so far, so good!
Thank you sir, and cannot wait to be be back to share my experiences.’

Anirudh Batra from Tata House said:

‘I am sending this email to inform you that we are settled in Hutchins (Hutchins School Tasmania, Australia) and having a great time here. We are taking part in rugby and hockey here which is keeping us well occupied. Also we did visit the city several times and are familiar with this place now. We will soon be sending you some pictures along with reports of our stay here.’

Anirudh Popli at Kashmir House from Deerfield Academy, MA, USA

‘I thought I should send you a detailed mail about the trip so far now that I have some time, I have taken the following classes, Algebra II, Asia in World History, English, Acting and Directing, and Physics 1- Accelerated. My co-curricular choices until now have been Theatre Tech, but for the month of May, I have switched to Ultimate Frisbee.

My classes are a lot of fun, in Acting I am currently rehearsing for a performance on their Parent’s Weekend, and otherwise we are studying a lot in the other classes. The other activities and events are also amazing here that happen during the weekends, I also participated in a workshop of spoken word poetry, I witnessed a four hour music concert of any students willing to perform, and today I went to an Amusement park nearby called ‘Six Flags’, which was a fantastic experience.

I am truly loving it here, the people are so welcoming and friendly, that you don’t even feel the transition. Thank you very much for this wonderful opportunity’.

Devika Cariapa is the mother of CC Cehngappa from Kashmir House. Her son is on exchange to St Alban’s School, South Africa and said:

‘Dear Mr Shukla,
Yes, we have managed to What’s app them both- they are fine and settled with their respective families. The school has given them a friendly reception and as far as Chengappa is concerned (as I have not directly talked to Rahul) he is playing a school hockey match on Wednesday for one of their league teams and has joined up with the music school where he is playing guitar. The day starts very early – 0630 and ends 1330 with games to follow.
I will send more news as we are planning a Skype call today.
Hope all is well with you.
Warm regards,
Devika Cariapa’

Tim Rayner is the Exchange Co-ordinator and Head of Upper School Scotch College, Melbourne, Australia and this is his report:

‘Dear Ambikesh,

I hope you are well. Thank you for your email.
I am pleased to report that both boys are well and seem to be enjoying their Scotch experience. Kartavya Nagpal (265 O) and Bhuvan Varma (311 T) are fully involved in the life of the school. I will ask them to contact you.

On another note, I can confirm we will be sending two boys to the Doon School this year. Both boys are very capable and should enjoy the experience. I will provide more details shortly.

Tim Rayner (Exchange Co-ordinator)
Head of Upper School
Scotch College, Melbourne, Australia

Christina McAdam is one part of the host parents for Kanav Agarwal from Jaipur House said:

‘Good morning Ambikesh,
Just to let you know that Kanav arrived safely last week and seems to have settled in well. We had no problem finding him at the airport as I had been in touch with his Mother and got some pictures. A lovely well mannered boy and a credit to your school, really. We have managed to do quite a bit of sight-seeing already and I know Bishops are planning a trip to Robin Island this week with all the exchange books which should be very interesting. He has gone into the boarding house this week, just for the week – Andrew is away in the UK rowing as he just got his South African Junior Colours but will return home early next week. Just felt that Kanav might enjoy the different experience and prefer to be around boys his own age. My younger boy will keep an eye on him but am sure he will be fine.
Now, I suppose we need to sort out Andrew’s exchange. When are you expecting him, for how long and are there are excursions planned, Kanav mentioned that you do this during your half term? Could you let me have your thoughts etc? Once all decided we will need and official invitation from Doon to apply for his visa etc.’
Kind regards
Christina McAdam
Host parents for Kanav Agarwal 275 J

Vivan Sharma from Kashmir House was on exchange to Herlufsholm Skole, Denmark said:

‘Dear Sir
I have been on exchange for 3 weeks now and have enjoyed it a lot. I have experienced their traditions thoroughly and really have had a lot of fun. During the weekend I went to the city of Hamburg where I had a tour of the city and saw various tourist attractions. There are two weeks left of my exchange and I hope they will be great.
Vivan Sharma’

Rahul Das went to Wynberg Allen School in Cape Town. He is in Kashmir House and said:

‘I am afraid that it is a bit late But it does not affect my thankfulness towards all the people who have a played a part in making my exchange in South Africa a true success for me as an individual. I landed safely in Delhi last morning. The difference in temperature in South Africa and India is massive so it will take time for me adapt to the high weather conditions here. I got the news that around 1200 people have lost their lives due to heat stroke in Delhi alone.

As for my exchange, it has been a huge success in my eyes. The speech which I delivered on the last day was appreciated a lot by the boys and staff of the school. The Headmaster of the school was so pleased with it that now he has kept it with himself. A dream which I never dreamt of came true for me in South Africa.

After all my achievements, attainments and success one thing that I can never forget is none of this would have ever been possible without the immense efforts put in by all you people. Anything is achievable if you are at the right place at the right time with the right people is something that I have learnt from this experience and I will go on to cherish this for the rest of my life.

I will not say thank you here because I believe it is too small a word for what you all have done for me.’