The Glen Bard

The student news site of Glenbard West High School

The Glen Bard

The Glen Bard

Year Fifteen of Glenbard West French Class Traveling, Now Encouraging Senior Participation

Photo provided by Madame C.

AP French is looking for more seniors to join their 2024 spring break France trip from other world language classes, encouraging students to join by sharing their experiences. The signup deadline has been extended until December 17th, as teachers are so passionate about making this happen. 

Glenbard West’s French 4 honors and AP had an exchange program last school year. According to French teacher Ms. Callicoat, or better known as Madame C, this exchange “started 14 years ago” with a travel company, becoming “sister schools” with a high school in Dunkirk, France. Many West students in French have had the opportunity to travel together to France, and now the chance is opening up to any world language class. However, this upcoming spring will be just a trip to Paris instead of the usual foreign exchange student program. 

There are several benefits to participating in the program including “giving people a chance to step away from home before college” or “being able to see that you can be independent from home and see that you can be okay,” says Madame C. She continues to articulate how traveling abroad and seeing it truly isn’t as scary as you think it is. 

The trip is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in a foreign culture, even if you do not take French. Madame C emphasizes the importance of building “self confidence and realizing your own independence” and making friends in another country. The experience is “so beneficial and exciting,” she emphasizes. Having a relationship with someone who lives completely differently, yet familiarly, is so fascinating and you begin to understand “how close and accessible it is,” according to Madame C.

There are other West teachers who have also joined the trip, including Spanish teacher, Mr. Sanchez, retired physics teacher, Mr. Medic, and orchestra teacher, Mr. Ortega. Mr Sanchez says, “I love traveling, so when Madame Calliocat invited me on the trip, it was an easy decision for me.” Although he did not participate last year, and probably not this year, he has twice in the past. Mr. Sanchez emphasized his love for France, which goes to show that even if you do not speak French, it is still both an excellent learning and social experience.

Senior, Maggie Fischer “wanted to go to France forever” and because of the program, she was able to. “It was cool to go on a trip without my parents and without my family,” Fischer states. This was not the only school trip she has gone on, but it is her favorite. Both Annabelle Sinta, senior, and Fischer “want to go back” and are looking forward to this March.

For West senior Annabelle Sinta, the thought of leaving the country in this situation was “terrifying” but in the end, she did not want to come back to America, and instead wanted to stay with her French friends. This is a feeling that all of the people that partook in the trip experience, emphasizing the impact it has on the students’ lives.

France’s sister school student, Amelie Wicke, had also felt nervous about meeting her Glenbard West student, as she did not come to America and this would be the first time they had met. “I had hoped she’s nice and that we get along together,” stated Wicke.

This upcoming trip to Paris, France is open to any language-taking seniors here at West who are interested in going out of their comfort zone and sightseeing in the beautiful city of Paris. They will be staying in a hotel located in Paris and will be visiting attractions such as the Eiffel Tower, Sainte Chapelle, Notre Dame, and many more. Immerse yourself in French culture and contact Ms. Callicoat before the deadline of December 17th for more details.

Photo provided by Madame C.
*author has bias because she participated in last spring breaks France trip*
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