Benefits of international friendships


Tara Stewart

Web Editor-in-Chief and French 4 student Laura Figi comments on how taking French has impacted and other students.

Laura Figi, Web Editor-in-Chief

Vandegrift has won many awards for French program, and last year was recognized as an Exemplary French Program with Honors—the only school in Texas to receive such an award. All the way from France to Texas is more than 5,000 miles, but what connects the two cities is two computers, two languages and a passion for culture. Vandegrift and Charlotte Perriand Lycée in Lille, France have been communicating and teaching each other since the beginning of the year, which is an opportunity that every school, every foreign language program and every student should have.
It’s proven that people learn languages easier when started young. In France, students start early, and generally learn multiple languages at once. This is what I dream for Vandegrift. Schools all over America are lacking in the language department, which is the one place that we should be strong. Languages connect us to the rest of the world, they have allowed for me to speak to the people I know overseas, the ones I have connected with through a language that isn’t native to me. Learning French has made me so proud of myself and more capable of functioning in a place far away from home.
Getting to spend time with the teachers, who visited in March, and students over text, Skype and Facebook is a blessing that not very many people get to have. Only about one in five people speak more than one language in America, where over half of the population of Europe can speak two or three. Learning languages is something that needs to be cultivated and encouraged; the higher the growth on language learning, the more students in the future can be given the same opportunity that I have, which is getting to share your piece of the world and someone else’s.