College – Issue 36

EXCHANGES Deutschland exchange a unique experience

Daniel Kutovoy opted for a wintry Christmas last year, spending it in Korschenbroich, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. He and Angus Murray, both in Year 12 at the time, went on the German exchange, which saw them each spend eight weeks living with a German family, attending the local co-ed secondary school and experiencing life in a foreign country. “I wanted to do it because I wanted to have those experiences and I thought it could be an opportunity that might not come again,” said Daniel. So, as College boys were finishing school for summer he was settling in to life with Jonas Weidner, his host brother, and his family in a village about 40 minutes from Cologne. “Being originally from Russia, and having that accent, many people thought I sounded more German than I actually was!”

This proved a double-edged sword.

Highlights of Daniel’s stay were attending a football game between his village and the team from neighbouring Dortmund, spending a lot of family time at Christmas and New Year, and the five-day trip to Berlin for all New Zealand students on the exchange. “Every day we were taken on excursions to see mostly historical places and buildings – some from medieval times, and many fromWorld War 2 and the post-war period.” In spite of getting back home just a few days before College resumed for 2019, Daniel says the exchange was a really worthwhile experience. “I think it’s a great experience and really helpful to you, as long as you are ready to spend eight weeks of our summer in a European winter, going to school for five weeks.” Host brother Jonas Weidner spent part of Term 1 at College being hosted by Daniel and the Kutovoy family.

With three years of German studies already, Daniel found no trouble chatting at home, “But it was not easy studying in a foreign language.” In fact, it was a real challenge, and his selection of Biology, Physics and Chemistry, for example, was made for a good reason. But perseverance is paramount on exchanges, and Daniel found that by the end of his stay his ability to understand what was being said in the classroom had improved a lot. His ability to converse had also improved, and from his family speaking quite a lot of English at the beginning, by the end they spoke very little to him at all.

“I felt I had made progress.”

He loved the food, especially the famous German sausages, “They were very nice.”

Christ’s College Canterbury


Made with FlippingBook HTML5