Local students travel to Poland and China


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News release from Fort Wayne Sister Cities International:

Local Students Travel to Poland and China

(February 2, 2016) – Fort Wayne Sister Cities International (FWSCI) proudly announces the names of a select group of area high school students who were awarded Chapman Scholarships allowing them to travel to Plock, Poland and to Taizhou, China this summer. FWSCI has been sending young people on short, international exchanges to Fort Wayne’s Sister Cities for over 30 years thanks to the generosity of Howard Chapman and the Chapman Scholarships.

Chapman Exchange Students visit comparable high schools in their Sister City and homestays give students a truely immersive experience. They have enough time to experience family life in another part of the world by living in a local home with a local family. Students will visit the area high school and see for themselves the difference in the educational systems. Students develop friendships while observing the differences and similarities in cultural and family dynamics. They’ll experience life in a big city, daily modes of transportation, as well as local foods and the arts. In his report to the FWSCI Board, Sam Dvorak, one of last year’s scholarship winners, stated, “The tremendous impact that the Minato family (Sam’s host family) had on me will never be forgotten.” Most of the students expressed that personal connections were the best memories of this life-altering exchange. It often happens that students from the homestay families will visit Fort Wayne the following year. International friendships are made and strengthened thanks to this exchange initiative.

This year, FWSCI received 38 student applications from six local high schools for these cultural, historical and immersive experiences in Fort Wayne’s sister cities. After reviewing the applications, 19 applicants were chosen to be interviewed. From these interviews, nine students were selected to visit China from June 13 through June 23, 2016; and four students were selected to visit Poland from June 11 through July 2, 2016. The 13 Chapman scholars represent all six area high schools.

The students who will be traveling to China include: from Bishop Luers, Tamla Hser; from Canterbury, George Sun and Elise Wellman; from Homestead, Lisa Chen; from New Tech, Tin Nilar Oo; from North Side, Ethan Grimes, Chase McCard, Jennifer Mora and Jodi Passino. Their chaperones include Ami Gomez, Director of Alternative School for Carroll High School, and Yan Liu Pan, Chinese teacher at Canterbury High School.

The students traveling to Poland are: from Canterbury, Sarah Croft, James Geyer III, Olivia Jimenez; and from Carroll, Emily Sullins. In case one of the students is unable to travel, Jared Newton, from North Side, was selected as an alternate. The chaperone for this group will be Elise Olson, World History teacher at Blackhawk Middle School.

The Plock, Poland trip will be an immersive, cultural experience for the students who will each be staying with a Plock family. There will be enough time to visit historic sites including a trip to Poland’s capital, Warsaw, to Krakow and the Tatra Mountains.

The students, traveling to Taizhou, China, will experience, in the main, a cultural and historical tour beginning with their arrival in Shanghai where they will visit the sights. In Taizhou, they will do home-stays with host families, interact with students, and visit Taizhou’s historic attractions. The students depart from Beijing where they will conclude their international experience with a tour of the city.

FWSCI staggers the student visits to the Sister Cities every-other year. In 2014, the organization sent seven area students to Taizhou. In 2015, six students were selected from a pool of 86 applicants for the Takaoka, Japan trip; so, the next exchanges to Japan, as well as Germany will be in 2017.

Applicants must be a freshman, sophomore or junior attending high school in Allen County, Indiana, with preference going to current sophomore and junior students. Students are not required to speak or be studying the applicable language in order to be eligible to travel. If additional information about FWSCI exchange opportunities is needed, please contact Cherie Wright, Chair, Chapman Committee, at cwright@travlead.com.


About Fort Wayne Sister Cities International
FWSCI was established in 1976 and organized in 1983 as an Indiana corporation. FWSCI, a not-for-profit 501(c) (3) Corporation, is affiliated with Sister Cities International, headquartered in Washington, D.C. FWSCI’s mission is to globally advance friendship and peace through educational, cultural and economic exchanges. www.fortwaynesistercities.net


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