Meet the Holloway Family from Kansas!
Above: The Holloway family with their current exchange student Gaby, from Ecuador (lower left)
CIEE: How did you first decide to Host with CIEE, and how long have you been a host family?
Holloway Family: We have been a host family for five years. I had a good friend when I was in high school who was an exchange student from Spain, and I have always thought it would be interesting to host a student when my kids were in high school. I knew my CIEE local coordinator through my son's high school (our sons played soccer together) and signed up when she was seeking new host families.
CIEE: What do you enjoy most about hosting CIEE students?
Holloway Family: We enjoy sharing the American culture with them and seeing it through their eyes; and have also learned so much about their cultures, especially the small things one would never normally hear about.
CIEE: What do you like to do with your student?
Holloway Family: Trying to cook their native food with them has been very interesting; especially when we were learning the regional Thai dishes that had some very unique ingredients. We also have had great fun learning about and enjoying different school activities that our own children never pursued, like the swim team and marching band. Our family is very active in 4H, specifically with the Dog Training project. Three of our students have joined 4H and learned how to take care of and train dogs. One entered a local 4H Judged Dog show, and because of her hard work and dedication, won Grand Champion Senior Showmanship (over several senior level, seasoned 4H competitors).
Above: Mook, from Thailand, won 4H Grand Champion Senior Showmanship
CIEE: What was one of your favorite memories from hosting?
Holloway Family: Probably one of my favorite memories I have is a trip I bravely took with 3 teenagers (my 2 children and our student from Norway) to the West Coast. We experienced San Francisco, Yosemite, and a few days on the Pacific Coast beaches and learned so much during that time. Everyone got along great and really embraced the experience; there wasn't a moment of bickering or sulking despite being crammed together in a car and hotel room for 10 days straight, I don't think I have laughed so much in my life.
Above: The Holloway’s son and daughter with exchange student Catherine, from Norway, at Yosemite National Park.
CIEE: What would you say your student likes best about their experience so far?
Holloway Family: Each of our students has had a different experience during their stay in the United States, but I think all of them would agree that they like the friendly kids at our high school and the various activities unique to American high schools. Our students have always joined a sport or club, which facilitates fast friends and quick inclusion into the high school student body. One of our students made such fast friends that he was voted to be Homecoming King within 6 weeks of starting school!
Above: Marino, from Germany, was crowned homecoming king