Steffes Welcomes Exchange Student from the Republic of Moldova

Steffes welcomed Prepelita Marius, an exchange student from the Republic of Moldova, to shadow manufacturing engineer Seth Obritsch for the day. Marius is a Junior in high school completing a foreign exchange study at South Heart High School for two months.

Through the exchange program, Marius is learning about American culture and working on his English-speaking skills. In Moldova, an Eastern European country between the Ukraine and Romania, they begin studying the English language in the second grade, but Marius said it is much different speaking the language here than learning it in a classroom.

Marius is interested in eventually studying Mechanical Engineering in college and asked his counselor at South Heart High School about shadowing a mechanical engineer. Through the Dream It Do It program Steffes participates in, Marius and his counselor got in touch with Obritsch to set-up the job shadow.

So far during his time in the United States, Marius has visited Mount Rushmore and thought it was very interesting how it was built into stone and reflected American history. If he could go anywhere in the U.S. Marius would go to MIT in Massachusetts to study engineering. 

Four other students from his class in Moldova are also studying as exchange students in the U.S. currently. He has friends placed in Arizona and Michigan. Before coming to the United States, the students had to go through a training where they learned what to expect from American culture and how to go about making friends as well as how to manage their money in the U.S. and what to expect with the exchange rate of the Moldovan Leu compared to the Dollar.

Some things that surprised Marius upon his arrival in Dickinson were how much bigger cars are and the number of trucks he saw on the roads. His town in Moldova is about the same size as Dickinson, however, there are only three trucks total and the rest of the vehicles are small cars. Homes in the United States are much larger than in his country and in Moldova, every home has a garden where people grow their own produce.

His hobbies back in Moldova include cycling, playing pool and table tennis, board games such as Monopoly and UNO, and spending time with his friends.