Home sweet… Netherlands?

BY ANNA MINTON (’17)

Home is a place that everyone loves. It’s a place that is comforting, and that most people dream of. For sophomore Rowan Sharkey, though, it’s more of the opposite.

“I’ve always wanted to go explore new places, and now I have the chance” Sharkey said, when asked about her student exchange trip scheduled for next year to the Netherlands.

Rowans Sharkey’s family has a long history of traveling. Rowan’s parents both travel often for their jobs, and her older sister Maura Sharkey spent a year in Finland for an exchange program. Rowan herself went to England in 2012 to go on a singing tour with her choir.

Because of all this experience, Sharkey isn’t too worried about her upcoming trip. “I’m not that scared because my family is very independent- we aren’t very reliant on each other” Sharkey said. “I’m more scared of the first week of being there than I am of missing my family for a long time”.

Rowan Sharkey doesn’t have too many worries though. She already speaks 5 languages other than English, and knows some of the social rules of different parts of Europe. “I know that if you look at someone in the eyes, it considered really rude,” Sharkey says. “There are a lot of odd social rules like that!”

All in all, Rowan Sharkey was excited about her upcoming trip. “I’m really excited, and I hope I make lifelong friends”, Sharkey said. “I really want to get immersed in a culture… I want to feel vulnerable.”