Karl Martinsen decided to do the foreign exchange program on a dare.
The Halden, Norway native was scrolling through Instagram when an ad for the EF program popped up and one of his friends dared him try the program.
So far Martinsen is enjoying his experience. He is living with Cheryl Luzum in Exeter and finds that the “the people are more talkative here and generally nicer here. They seem to be more social than Norwegians.”
He is enjoying the food, too. “It’s just a different culture from my own and it’s pretty exciting.”
He did note that he really enjoys sloppy joes and “Cheryl made chicken noodle soup (he had never had it before) and it was like heaven.”
He does miss some of the food at home and of course, his family and friends. His parents and older sister have planned to come to visit him in Nebraska in the spring.
His parents encouraged him to participate in the exchange program as his mom came to America for a year when she was 19. She came on a work visa and worked part time three days a week and explored the country for the rest of the time.
One of Martinsen’s goal this year was to “feel more comfortable talking to people and also improve my English I still struggle a little bit.”
It has been a challenge for him to get to know people but he feels comfortable with things now. He enjoyed his time as a student manager for the football team and now he is on the basketball team.
While he is in the States he plans to travel. He will go to Arizona over winter break and in the spring take a trip to the west coast with the exchange group.
He will have one more year of school in Norway when he returns and then he is unsure of what he wants to do. He may be chosen for military service but otherwise he looks to do something with finance.