Alan, Carolyn and Abby (Abigail)'18 Varker have been thrilled to welcome Jessy Li, a new student from China, into their home as she prepares to embark on a Mount Saint Mary Academy education. An incoming sophomore who was a student at Notre Dame High School in Lawrenceville, Jessy has already been a warm and wonderful presence in the Varker home and on the Academy campus.
"Hosting an international student is not something we had ever considered before. But when we heard about the travels to China to interview students, we decided to dive right in and take advantage of this unique opportunity and allow one more girl to benefit from the mission of Mount Saint Mary Academy: to challenge each student to develop her fullest potential in a Christian atmosphere of love and caring," shared Mrs. Varker.
When Jessy arrived at their Colonia home on June 2, she was rather shy and reserved which did not come as a surprise to Abby. But, after the girls took a brief walk around her neighborhood, a new friendship quickly sparked and Jessy became more comfortable and open to her new experience at the Mount. She signed up for her courses, toured the Academy campus, and met some of Abby's friends on June 2.
"She wants to learn about us just as much as we want to learn about her," said Abby. "I think it is going to be a very culturally enriching opportunity for all of us." She believes that learning more about China through this first-hand experience will enlighten and broaden her global perspective.
photo by D. Toryak
"Even though Jessy will be two years behind me here at the Mount, she is really just two months younger than me. We are both 16," noted Abby, who wants to learn Mandarin Chinese during the summer.
"Jessy speaks English very well," she said, "but this has been enough motivation for me to try something new. It will be great for us to keep learning from each other as we go along this path. And, my friends are so excited to spend time with Jessy and to make her a friend of their own."
"The ability to open your home to another girl who is seeking an education at a school like this is something every parent - who knows the value of a Mount education - should consider and take that leap of faith!" concluded Abby.
If you are interested in learning more about hosting a student from China, please click here for more information.