International Students Experience First Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a time-honored tradition in the United States. Also celebrated in Canada, Thanksgiving is not widely known outside of North America. Many international students who are new to the Northwood community, such as many of our soccer players, experienced their first ever Thanksgiving in America. And so I sat down with several Northwood students and interviewed them about how they spent their holiday.

Matías Valenzuela ‘19 from Chile spent his Thanksgiving Break in New York City. With his friends, he went to Times Square, walked through Wall Street, and saw the Statue of Liberty. He did not eat a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, but this experience was nothing like anything he had ever had before in his home country. Despite the cold, this holiday was a perfect getaway from school for him.

Sean Kgwakgwa ‘21 of South Africa spent Thanksgiving break at his teammate Aiden’s house in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. He stacked firewood for the first time and even ate a classic Thanksgiving dinner that consisted of perfect roast turkey, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, wild rice, and mashed potatoes with gravy.

Some international students, including Joona Havia ‘20 from Finland, spent their first-ever Thanksgiving here at Northwood. Havia split time between Northwood and the home of Ms. Elenor Mandigo of the Admissions Office. Spending so much time at school wasn’t the most exciting way to spend his time off from school, he still found ways to make his Thanksgiving break fruitful.

All Northwood students spent Thanksgiving in their own special way. Now that school is back in session, it’s time for them to get back to work. That is, until December break, which starts on the 20th, when students and faculty will get to spend the Holiday Season with those who are dear to them.


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