EDITOR’S NOTE: This story is the second in a multi-part series about Stephenville High School’s foreign exchange students. These students travel from all over the world and study as juniors at the high school.
STEPHENVILLE (January 24, 2016) – Norwegian born and Swedish raised, Julie Morken came to the United States looking forward to getting to know our American culture. She lives with the Cozart family this year, and enjoys playing soccer, running cross country and track, riding horses and hanging out with her new friends.
“I think [studying abroad] is a good way to learn who you are, to get to know yourself a little better,” Morken said.
In Sweden, Morken played soccer as an extracurricular activity and traveled with her team to Arkansas and then Minnesota, so she is not unfamiliar with American culture. But, Morken is still not used to the differences between Swedish food and American food.
“The food here is so unhealthy,” Morken said. “We don’t have as many fast food restaurants as you do here. So, we don’t eat out a lot.”
Morken does enjoy how friendly the people are here, which helps with being missing her family and friends back home. Meeting new people in every class is not something Morken is used to, because in Sweden she was always with the same group of students. She also enjoys Texas weather.
“It’s like the one day it’s freezing and the next day it’s like tanning weather,” Morken said.
Morken gave up her senior year at the high school she attends in Sweden to experience American high school. When she returns, she will retake her senior year and graduate a year later than her classmates.
“I think it’s cool to experience high school because [there is] so much high school spirit,” Morken said. “At home we don’t have high school spirit. You just go to school, and then you go home and do your stuff. Here it’s like you do stuff outside of school that belongs to the school.”