This Monday we celebrate Independence Day. Commonly called the Fourth of July, the day commemorates how colonial Americans fought for and won freedom from English rule. In 1776, our founding fathers declared independence from England and established the United States, so today we say: happy birthday America!
This nation was founded on the idea that individuals should have the freedom to live as they choose. People of all backgrounds have been drawn to this country by the promise of this opportunity. In time, the United States became a melting pot: a place full of people of different national origins, religious backgrounds, cultures, ethnicities, sexual orientations, thoughts and opinions. We were founded on the ideal of embracing your fellow neighbor and celebrating uniqueness, because that’s what makes us so great: our ability to connect despite our differences.
At Academic Year in America, we believe in the ideals of liberty. We celebrate American communities made up of many unique facets that join together and form brilliant gemstones across the country. Appreciating each other’s backgrounds and experiences helps bridge divisions and leads to greater understanding and tolerance.
Courageous and inspired international exchange students from all over the world want to come to the U.S. to experience a new culture, a new school and a new family. They are willing to share their personal experiences and a little bit of their home culture to enrich our host communities. By hosting an AYA exchange student and encouraging this kind of cross-cultural exchange, you become an ambassador for America.
You and your family can show a student what the real America is all about, based on the founding principles of freedom and tolerance. Embrace hosting a student. Take them into your home. Welcome them into your family, local high school and community. Show them how accepting, loving and caring Americans really are. Use this experience to defy stereotypes and make real connections between our American culture and nations around the world, one student at a time.
Wishing you all safe, happy and healthy Fourth of July! Be sure to celebrate the best of what makes our nation a brilliant melting pot and beacon of liberty to the world.
For more information on hosting an exchange student, we encourage you to visit our website.