Wry Exchange

Trouble in FESlandia
04-03-08, 11:59 pm
Filed under: Exchange Program, Outbounds Outbounds | Tags: ,

 Oooh, do we have a humongous problem with our exchange program.  We are all volunteers, and the more experienced members live and breathe for this program.  We devote countless hours with joy to the kids and program.  Some of our newer members, eh, not so much.  I don’t know if they think it’s prestigious to be a part of this or what they are getting out of it.  They don’t like us, and don’t seem to like the students.
The problem?  Agatha didn’t do her job.  She didn’t vet an application before sending it overseas.  The problem should’ve been caught by the interview team, the outbound student chairman, and the country person.  The application had a bad reference because the person didn’t quite understand what he was supposed to do.  He rewrote a new reference as soon as he was told.  The updated reference seems to have sat somewhere for 6 weeks.  Next, Agatha has been unavailable for a few weeks, and didn’t tell anyone overseas she wasn’t going to be around.  Not only did the kid with the ‘bad’ reference not get accepted, so did a second student because they won’t deal with our program.  The other country ‘fired’ us!  Their kids’ applications were returned to them because no one signed for them.  So they aren’t sending us anyone, and we can’t send them anyone.  It’s April.  We’re fucked.  Husband has been scrambling this week to try to fix things. 
I hope we can report a happy ending soon.


5 Comments so far
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Ouch, I hope everything goes well for your program. I’ve read most of your posts up to December 2007, and you seem like a really amazing & dedicated (usually temporary?) host mom and volunteer. I think I’ve figured out your program, if I’m getting the pun from wryexchange correct, but who knows. The one I’m thinking is really big (and small) though, so I’m not sure what the big deal about secrecy is for, but whatever floats your boat; it’s hard to strike a balance between privacy and transparency.

Comment by Sarah Nguyen

I keep the program’s name and my location private just so no one from my program can ‘prove’ it’s me writing this. A few of the people don’t like me, big surprise. I don’t like them because they don’t put the kids first. I don’t want to listen to them yap that I’m a bipolar wackadoo, or that I’m tarnishing the program’s reputation. Sometimes I write about specific kids, and some of them are minors, so i do want to give them anonymity.

Comment by Wry

Hmm, that makes sense. My dad would argue that I don’t keep my blog anonymous enough. ^-^; I’ve never met anyone in person dealing with clinical depression and/or ADD in person, or at least am not close enough to anyone like that in real life to know that part of them. I do see a few people on forums mention that they have clinical depression, though, and it always surprises me because I never see it. But, I’m 17 and have no life experience anyway. =P

Comment by Sarah Nguyen

I don’t think most of the kids realize I have depression. I think it helps me empathize with the ones who are homesick or having problems. I’m a good listener. I’m always happy to chat with people, and will give out my AIM or MSN info privately when asked. Do you want to be an exchange student?

Comment by Wry

Yes, I will be an exchange student to Germany via the ASSE program next, 08-09. I received the CBYX scholarship so it’s all expenses paid (except spending money, passport fees & domestic travel), which is nice. My blog (http://sarahng.com/) is currently entirely dedicated to my exchange or anything related to it, like getting wisdom teeth pulled out earlier than usual because of exchange. That one’s funny because you actually mention it in one of your earlier posts.

Comment by Sarah Nguyen

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