Students from Scotland come to Ohio for the annual UAHS Scottish exchange program

By Katie Chong, ’18

On Oct. 5, 17 students from Scotland got off a plane in Columbus where they would live for the next week and a half. These students attend Madras College in St. Andrews, Scotland which is partnered with UAHS. This unique exchange trip allows an intercultural experience for all students.

When the Scots came to America, they had the opportunity to experience the various things that Ohio has to offer. Senior Portia Silver was among the select students chosen for this unique opportunity. Silver applied for the program during the spring of her junior year and was matched with her Scot in the beginning of the summer.

“It’s actually a funny story…the only reason that we got matched is that she is allergic to dogs and cats and my house was the only one that didn’t have them,” Silver said.

During the summer, the 17 pairs got to know each other over Facebook and other social media. Come time for the Scots to travel to America, they had already planned out an itinerary to show the Scots around Ohio.

“We went to the OSU game on Saturday and we all went to Cedar Point together. We also went hiking together one day in Yellow Springs, Ohio,” Silver said.

The Scottish students also brought a part of their culture to America. They taught the American students about their culture and brought over foreign gifts and traditions. One night, the Scots decided to teach the Americans traditional Scottish dances which became one of highlights of the visit.

“My favorite memory was when they taught us Scottish dances and it was really funny because they all know the dances really well and I was bad at it,” Silver said.

The Americans plan to take their trip across the pond during spring break for a week and a half. Highlights of the trip include touring the University of St. Andrews and experiencing a typical school day in a Scottish school.