Ingrid Remmen has joined the family of Tom and Mary Lou Vossler this year on the foreign exchange student program.
Remmen, from Oslo, Norway is making a lot of adjustments. She’s gone from a big town to a small town, from a large urban neighborhood to living out of town on a farm.
So far Remmen has enjoyed her experience in Nebraska. She had applied for the program and quite a few of her friends had been accepted but it wasn’t until 10 days before she had to leave to come that she found out that she had a host family.
It was hard to leave her parents and older brother but she is looking forward to seeing them when they come to visit in April. Between the Vossler’s and school activities at Exeter-Milligan Remmen hasn’t had a lot of time to miss her life back in Norway.
Remmen played volleyball for Exeter-Milligan and will also join the basketball team. At home in Norway she plays handball outside of school. “Sports aren’t in school so it’s a club team. We play year round.”
So far Remmen has had the opportunity to experience quite a bit of the area with the Vosslers. They have traveled to Kansas City where Remmen got to try a funnel cake for the first time. They have also taken in a Husker game, viewed the Sunken Gardens in Lincoln at their prime, seen a Salt Dogs game, eaten at Ribfest and explored the Omaha zoo.
The Vosslers have plans to take Remmen to South Dakota to see Mt Rushmore and other sights along with an upcoming ski trip where Remmen will feel very comfortable on the slopes.
Remmen also has plans to take a trip to Hawaii with the Foreign Exchange student group. She hopes too travel with her parents when they come.
“I like shopping here, things are cheaper. I like American food. We ate the same type of foods but the combinations are different and the style of clothes is a bit different,” explained Remmen.
So far Remmen has enjoyed her classes at Exeter-Milligan. For her, this year will count, but she will have one more year, year 13, when she returns. “I miss the open campus. Norway is a more like college. We don’t have the same schedule every day and classes are harder there. I miss going to the mall for lunch to eat.”
However, she is enjoying her history classes at Exeter-Milligan. “When we have history we have about the same mostly. We have more Norwegian history.”
Arriving at the Vossler’s home was like stepping on to a different planet for Remmen. She has no pets at home and the Vossler’s have cattle, cats, a dog and sheep. She’s also gotten to experience the farm life, riding in a combine and being around the equipment. So far, her comment about living at the Vossler’s,”I like it a lot they are real nice. It’s a lot of fun.”
The Vossler’s have enjoyed the experience as well. Mary Lou explained that “We have been learning so much about a different culture and having her in our home has been a blessing. We have had a lot of laughter and learned a lot about her and her country. I think we’ve gained an appreciation for differences. We’ve been impressed with such a young female, only 17, who is so open to new experiences and willing to see the world by herself. I am not too sure many students around her would do that.”