International Students at BCCHS

International Students at BCCHS

Lourenco Medici, Sports Editor


A big step. One definition of a really big step for a school is accepting international students from a variety of different countries.  As a society, there are many problems and social differences that we have to face. People could sit and discuss societal problems for hours and still wouldn’t be able to find the right or the wrong answers. Topics could include who is eligible for a job, who is most certified, and who is the most qualified to be the president. This gives everyone a variety of root issues that divide many people with different opinions getting us nowhere. The decision to accept international students, for an American educational system, is an easy one because it benefits both the schools and the international students. For a student to be a stranger in somewhere completely different from their home, gives them maturity and experience for their life.  It also increases American students’ knowledge about the world outside their country.  Listening to different viewpoints from around the world may open a student’s mind to become more globally aware.

Exchange programs occur all over the world, and the U.S. is a place that many students look forward to going. Some of them want to understand more about how the “American way of life” works. Others get away from their parents to become more responsible later on in life. Another reason why most choose the U.S. is to adopt a new lifestyle and defeat the language barrier. As we know, the United States is a famous country in the world and so is the English language. Staying from six months up to a year, without being able to speak your original language, international students find themselves in situations in which they are required to speak English and this helps make them improve their language skills and get more comfortable with the language. With that ability, doors will open for students in very important jobs–jobs that might not even be imagined yet–and it puts students at a higher level of employment.

Birmingham Community Charter High School is a school that opens its doors for foreign students and does that in an excellent way. This year, Birmingham has students from all over the world: Germany, Brazil, Norway, Vietnam and several others. Ms. Zeller is the assistant principal responsible for all those students and does an excellent job of making international students fell welcome.

Lucas Correa, from Brazil, got here last semester and joined in the BCCHS Tennis Team in the spring semester and for this fall semester, he joined the football team. As a foreign student, Lucas can say that the way that everyone welcomed him in class, and on the sports team was wonderful.

Lucas Correa, grade 12, is an international student from Brazil attending BCCHS

The teachers and the students at BCCHS try to make sure that everyone is included, even the “strangers”. “At the beginning, it was really hard, everything was new, and it was hard to communicate with the others. It was also hard being away from home, but with time, we fit into this “new way of life” and get used to it,” Correa said. “After a while, I began to understand more about the school, the new people that I was talking to and today I can see a big uncertainty about wanting to go back to Brazil right away,” he explained. Everyone–the American students, the teachers, and the international students–gain knowledge with this experience, and many different ideas get spread.