NEWBERRY — Chananyakarn Rakborisuttisri’s first experience to the United States is her exchange experience at Newberry Academy.
Rakborisuttisri, who goes by Sincere, is 16 and in the tenth grade. She is from a small city in Thailand and is studying at the Academy for 10 months.
“People are very friendly here,” said Sincere, who explains that she likes the smaller city. “I don’t really like big cities.”
Sincere decided to try the exchange trip out because of her older brother who told her about it.
“He didn’t do (the exchange trip) but he worked in the United States for three months and told me it was a very good experience. He’s 20 years old and now studies at a university in Bangkok,” said Sincere.
As for Sincere’s parents, she said that her mom is a nurse and her dad owns a business.
Sincere is staying with her host family who have a daughter, Riley Leopard, who attends the academy. Leopard is 16 and in 11th grade and Sincere said she is very nice. Plus, the two girls are the same age.
As for the Academy’s intimate size, she enjoys getting to know all the students in all the grades. At her school in Thailand, she explains that there are about 2,000 students.
“It’s a big difference from Newberry Academy,” she said.
Another difference is the food which Sincere said she enjoys typical American cuisine such as hamburgers.
“In Thailand, I have to eat rice at every meal and in America, we never eat rice,” she said.
“I want to learn all about American culture. It’s very different,” said Sincere.
School is also a very different experience. For example, she explains that in Thailand school starts later at 8:30 a.m. and also she doesn’t have any classes such as chorus or drama.
“We do have P.E. in Thailand,” she adds.
Sincere explains that in Thailand, rules are more strict because students cannot paint nails or wear a lot of accessories.
At the Academy, Sincere is taking English, P.E., chorus and pre-calculus but her favorite is P.E. because she’s able to talk with other people.
She is also taking advantage of the sports while in Newberry as she participates in cross country and is looking forward to basketball.
“My favorite sports are swimming, basketball and cross country,” said Sincere.
Once Sincere finishes her exchange trip and returns to Thailand, she does have to write about her experience for the school magazine but she’s not worried about it since she enjoys taking pictures and enjoys English.
“America is the best country,” said Sincere.