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Celebrating National Foreign Language Week

Celebrating National Foreign Language Week

St. Sebastian's kicked off this year's National Foreign Language Week with an assembly on Monday, March 6, run by the members of International Club. The club's president, Andrew McNeil '23, opened the assembly by discussing the importance of studying foreign languages for the sake of understanding and appreciating other cultures and then introduced the speakers to follow.

James Joyce '24 spoke about how a trip to Paris and Copenhagen changed his perspective on travel. After being immersed in these two European countries, he saw how different they were in culture, food and lifestyle. He noted that to get the most out of travelling abroad, one cannot simply be a tourist but must immerse themselves in the culture in order to experience it to its fullest.

Kellan Kilmartin '24 talked about a trip he made with his family and close friends to Spain. His most memorable memory was visiting a friend of his father's who lives 30 minutes outside of Barcelona. Spending time with a native gave him a unique experience to see how a local navigates the city and behaves in his own environment. This gave Kellan a new value and appreciation for the culture.

Jonathan Demosthene '24, who is a Haitian-American, talked about how proud he is of his Haitian identity and its culture and traditions, from music, dance, and food. He said it's so important to learn about different cultures because it teaches you about different people and their traditions and gives you a way to connect with people from other backgrounds.

Chris Condron '23 thanked his grandmother, who is a big art collector, as the main reason he's experienced many cultures throughout his life. For her 70th birthday, she took Chris and his cousins to Italy to enhance their understanding of their Italian heritage. He also had the opportunity to travel to Costa Rica for a service trip and used his knowledge of the Spanish language for the first time in a foreign country, which gave him an immersive experience.

Throughout the week, members of the International Club sold treats from different cultures, including churros and Italian ices, after school to help celebrate National Foreign Language Week. The kitchen staff at the School also prepared multi-cultural dishes for lunch each day.