Moravian Says Farewell to Guatemalan Exchange Students

Moravian Academy, being committed to language, diversity and culture, hosts several students from Guatemala every year through the Faces & Our Cultures program.

This year, Jonás Vásquez and Andrés Salazar joined our community at the Merle-Smith Campus as sophomores. 

Exchange Students 2As part of the exchange program, they visited the Downtown Campus and shared their culture with our students. It was a great opportunity for grades 1-4 in the Spanish Immersion Program, grades 5-8 Post Immersion, and Spanish language classes in grades 6-8 to receive and participate in the interactive workshops led by Jonás and Andrés.


From talking about the Great Mayan Civilization, telling the centuries-old legend El Cadejo, playing a game about facts from Guatemala, coloring the symbolic Quetzal, and drawing symbols representing numbers, our students surely were exposed first hand to Guatemalan culture. These young presenters did a phenomenal job bringing a little piece of their country to Moravian that our students will certainly remember.

IMG_4919 2On December 6, 2022, Moravian Academy said goodbye to Jonás and Andrés during their last day at our school. As Merle-Smith Campus director Mr. Dylan Deal shared during a school meeting: While they were only at MA a few months, it felt like they had been a part of our community for much longer. 

"We hope to see you again," said Jonás to the student body. "I'm thankful for this experience here at Moravian."

Jonás and Andrés contributed tremendously to our campus," said Dr. Juan Rojo, Spanish teacher and campus coordinator for Faces and Our Cultures. "From performances at Coffeehouse to joining the soccer team on the bus and sidelines, they were amazing.  It is my hope that we were able to contribute to their experience as much as they did to ours." 

Ms. Yuli Vanegas, who hosted Jonás this fall, says, "Jonás is a happy and talented young man. It was great having him around. My son and I both learned a few things about the Guatemalan culture. We may even come and visit one day."

Are You Interested in Hosting an Exchange Student? 

The only factor that limited us to hosting two ambassadors is housing.  If you are interested in hosting in the future, please contact Dr. Juan Rojo ASAP. We would love to have more students from Guatemala and other parts of the Spanish-speaking world join us!


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