How Travel Correspondent, Katie Fetter, Prepares for Life in Paris


Hello Everyone!

I am Katherine Fetter!  My friends all call me Katie or Kat, though.  I was selected to be a Greenheart Travel correspondent for the language camp program in Paris, France this summer.  I am ecstatic to share my adventures with everyone!

For a little bit of background on me:

  • I am 16 right now, but I will be turning 17 on July 5th
  • This coming school year I will be a senior in high school
  • I play tennis at my school
  • I live within an hour of Chicago, Illinois
  • In college I want to study French, Greek, Latin, and Archaeology

The first time I heard about this program was last summer when my family hosted a French exchange student for a month.  It was so cool to expand my cultural perception of the world.  I was pretty shy while she was at my house, but after she went home, I decided that I wanted to expand my horizons and try an exchange program for myself.  We saw this program online and I decided that I wanted to go for it.

I got a job to start raising money for the trip, and I loved getting bank statements telling me that I was getting closer and closer to my goal.  There were times when I got discouraged and wanted to give up on my goal of going to France.  Every time I thought about that though, my mom gently helped me back on the path of pursuing the trip.

My advice to future applicants or people who are thinking about going on the trip is that even though the process might seem intimidating, the overall reward of going to another country to learn a language is well worth it.  Going to France, or Argentina, or Costa Rica, or Germany, or WHEREVER will be worth the little bit of nervousness you put into it.  Plus, bragging rights!!!  Hello?!?!?  You will automatically be 15% cooler.

Now, if you get to the week before your trip, like me, and you feel a little bit nervous about it, here are some things that will help you feel better.

Watch subtitled movies.

What language you watch in is up to you, of course, but I would recommend listening in French and reading in English so you can get used to how the language sounds as well as begin to recognize some of the more common words!

Listen to foreign music.

Again with the listening recognition. Even if you can only pick out a couple of the words, that is still a huge gain!  Think of all of the rap songs that you can’t understand.  It’s like that except in another language. See?  You’re fantastic!


Distract yourself with loads of books! (or your phone)



Text your friends about your fears.

Friends are usually helpful and supportive, but even if they are not, at least they will be a helpful distraction!


So on that note, see you all in my next blog and thanks for joining me on this adventure!



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