2019 French Exchange Program

Thursday, May 23rd, 2019


french exchange
You probably noticed the entourage of foreign-speaking students being paraded through the hallways of CHS a few weeks ago. Although some time has passed, I'm sure the French exchange students are remembered by many members of the CHS community - both students and staff. With the 2019 CHS French exchange program officially at a close, let’s recap some of the highlights.

For those who don't know, the French exchange program is run every year by French teacher Madame Caulfield. This year, participating CHS French students did not spend their spring break on an immersion trip in Monaco, but both parts of the exchange are typically offered. And the exciting part is, exchange programs are offered nearly every year in every language department in CHS, so dive in! If you are interested in participating in an exchange program, your language teacher will be able to assist you in the process, which is surprisingly easy. As a voluntary participant of the French exchange program myself, I strongly encourage you to take part into the immersive experiences offered by the CHS language department.

The fifteen French students arrived at Newark Airport after an eight-hour flight from London on Friday, April 5th, and spent the weekend with their host families exploring Chatham favorites: Arminio’s Pizza, Noah’s Bagels, Five Guys, and Dunkin’ Donuts (because America runs on Dunkin’). The entirety of Monday’s school day was spent shadowing their respective CHS hosts and learning about American high school. The remainder of the school week was much more exciting and included a variety of activities and excursions. Students went on a trip to downtown Morristown on Wednesday, and on Thursday, they accompanied AP French students on their trip to Princeton University. They also gave numerous presentations on Monaco to CHS French classrooms.

The end of the week, although sad, was topped off with a banquet in the CHS cafeteria, where the students, host families, friends, and teachers involved in the program parted ways and students got to explore the school and the L-wing elevator (in all its glory) with nearly the complete absence of the other students and staff. The students departed from CHS Friday afternoon aboard a bus to New York City, where they stayed for another week in a much larger group and did an absurd amount of sightseeing. Ultimately, the program was very enjoyable and a fantastic overall experience for myself, so I encourage other CHS students to take advantage of the opportunities Chatham offers and maybe host an exchange student.