High school students who never met people from other countries got a chance to branch out during a student cultural exchange forum building bridges between them and their peers from all over the world.
“It’s a great experience for me, meeting people from different countries, learning about them and how their (countries) work,” said 16 year old Deshawn Ford of Newark. “For this to happen to me, this is just motivation for me to keep moving up.”
The nonprofit New Community Corporation organized a meeting of 130 students at St. Joseph’s Plaza in Newark from the United States and countries such as Saudi Arabia, Korea, Germany, and China. All the international students are part of Fairleigh Dickenson University’s Social Ventures for Social Development program.
Most of the Newark students are part of the six week New Community Youth program which helps them prepare for college while learning skills for academics and employment. They are rising juniors and seniors.
“We try to let the kids experience things outside of their neighborhood, so we try to expose them to different cultural experiences outside of Newark,” said Jason Scorza, New Community Corporation’s vice provost for academic and international affairs.