One of the five foreign exchange students at Rushford-Peterson, Jacqueline Wiegold conquers her fears and turns them into a lifetime experience.
Hailing from the hilly land of Embrach, Switzerland, Jacqueline had already graduated after nine years of schooling, but chose to continue with her education.
She was not sure what to expect when she arrived in America: "I was afraid for the first day of school," says Wiegold. "At first I missed home. It was difficult to decide if I wanted to stay or go home".
Wiegold took a chance and remained in America, now relaying that she is glad she did.
"I came to learn English, see a new culture, and meet new people. To have an experience".
"I miss my friends and family. Not like I miss them saying I'd want to go home. I am happy to be here, and now I don't have time to spend thinking about it".
With the time she has had, Jackie has traveled to many places from Madison, Wisc., the Mall of America, and recently taking a trip to a waterpark.
As well as different places, she has experienced a different school, different foods, and people who she claims to be "more open and nice".
Jackie has had the opportunity to participate in two sports that are new to her, dance and basketball. She is also proud to return home and tell her friends of her first experience at a football game, a sport which they do not have in Europe.
She has also had the fortune of living in the host home of Mike and Robin Honken. "I am really happy in my new family. I love them. They're very nice, helpful, and do a lot with me. They are here for me," says Jackie.
When the time comes, Jackie will be thrilled to go home and tell all of her "one year in American high school" that she and many of her friends only see in movies.
One thing she misses is being able to speak her Swiss-German language, with the difficulties of speaking the foreign language of English every day. Yet Wiegold sees the benefits she will have in the future thanks to this opportunity.
She knows with ease that she will be prepared as an independent woman. She states, "To be away. To see something new. To be able to go on my own."