Brazil exchange student enjoyed local stay - Republic-Times | News

Brazil exchange student enjoyed local stay

By on July 18, 2018 at 2:27 pm

João Dias, a foreign exchange student from Brazil, came to Waterloo through Rotary International. (submitted photo)

People often say there’s nothing more American than eating apple pie or watching a baseball game. 

But for João Dias, a foreign exchange student through Rotary International, the time he felt most American was at another sporting event. 

“My first football game, whenever the football players came out, the cheerleaders came out and the marching band was playing I just felt so in on the culture and the whole experience,” Dias said.

Dias came to America during the first week of August 2017 to complete his senior year at Waterloo High School. But the process for being an exchange student started much earlier.

Dias started working toward being a foreign exchange student in May 2016. It was a long process, but a milestone in that process involved a test. 

The application process for the Rotary Youth Exchange Program, which Dias came to America through, is different for each country. 

In Brazil, Dias had to take a test that would determine the priority given to prospective students for selecting a location for them to live.

Dias, who previously attended high school at Colégio Paroquial in his hometown of Paranavaí in Brazil, placed 10th out of 22 students. He chose Waterloo as his destination. 

He said he wanted to be a foreign exchange student to learn about another culture.  

“I wanted to just experience the culture of another country,” explained Dias, whose father has been a Rotarian for 25 years. “I wanted to make my English better. I wanted to make new friends.”

Now, his time in America has come to an end as he returns to Brazil.

Dias said he has enjoyed the experience of being in the U.S…>>>

Read the rest of this article in the July 18, 2018, issue of the Republic-Times newspaper.

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James Moss