INGHAM COUNTY - For some families in the Ingham County area hosting a child is nothing new.
“This is my third time hosting. I’ve had three young men from japan and last summer I also had a young lady from Poland,“ said Vicky Collins.
For others it’s there first time.
“This is our very first time and the experience we’ve had so far, it’s a very positive experience for our entire family,” said John Nugent Resident of Ingham County participating in the exchange program.
Heather Grey International Coordinator for MSU Extension 4-H said, “In the summer the students of Labo program have an opportunity to come to the U.S. and spend one month in a summer home stay.”
This exposure shows difference of culture.
Daichi Nishichi Chaperone for MSU Extension explains, “Japanese people are very shy so they don’t try to talk a lot with other people but American people talk a lot and its very important to express their opinion and emotions to others so these points are very different between Japanese and American.“
Families express how a program like this is important for both host and exchange student.
“Its been a good experience for us because its motivated us to be a tourist in our own home town because my boys and I hadn’t seen the State Capital before because we had Coski here we made the trip to go there,” said Grey.
Grey explains how the program came about, “The Labo Tutoring organization in japan was teaching English as an after school program for grade k-12 and they wanted to add a international exchange component because the best way to learn a language is immersion.”
“I ask them are they ready to go home, and she said well I’d like to hang around for another week if I could. So we did something right. I encourage people to open their home and invite new guests give themselves the opportunity to learn the world around them,“ said Nugent.