My ASSIST Experience: Valeria Germanova

Now that I’ve been here for more than two months, I decided it’s time for me to tell you how I’m feeling and be completely accurate, not just overjoyed with everything new and great.

I am very happy here! I feel like ASSIST couldn’t have done a better job of finding the right place for me. I love it – I love my loving host family, my amazing school, dedicated teachers, and great new friends. People here have been so welcoming and supportive from day one… and they still are!

Since I’ve come here, I’ve been to a pool birthday party, Colorado trip, drive-in movie night, soccer games, cross country meets, State Fair, Sandia Peak, Homecoming, sleepover, Powderpuff game, Balloon Fiesta and Halloween party and sooo much more!

In terms of classes, I’m taking Adv. English III, Adv. Precalc Through Modeling, Adv. French IV, US History and Photo-Digital Design. I love the language classes because the teachers are super passionate about their subjects and always willing to help. We learn a lot in classes, but we have a lot of fun too. Honestly, my math (precalc) class is the most challenging, as it is not just a regular class but rather one with more real-life oriented problems. I believe this is a better way to understand new math concepts and know more about how everyday things work. That is why I am not giving up on this challenge and I keep getting better – I got 91% on that as my quarter grade! (You probably have my grade report too, but still… I’m pretty proud of it haha)

On clubs and extracurriculars, I’m currently a member of the Business and Quizbowl clubs. Also, I’m doing Speech and Debate! And it’s super exciting! With my amazing coach’s help, I prepared a Program Oral Interpretation (POI) called “America: The Freaking Best”. It’s about the typical American things and how foreigners see them. It consists of prose and poetry pieces by various authors, as well as different articles. Soo today was my first tournament here, at UNM, doing this particular event and it was overwhelming and super great… mostly because I got to finals!!! I was super happy and didn’t even expect that. I got 6th place which is actually pretty good!

Strangely enough – I do not feel homesick because I have soo many things going on here and great people to spend my time with. As the holidays are approaching, I’m expecting to actually feel the real homesickness, but I feel like I’m prepared for that and have a lot of ways to quickly get over it.

I can’t wait for Thanksgiving and Christmas here, though! They both are such great holidays and now that Halloween is over, I’m looking forward to them both.

It’s difficult for me to find the right words to thank you and everyone at ASSIST enough! I’ve been living my best life here and I know there’s so many more exciting experiences to come!