Netherlands Visit North Attleboro

by Matt Reimels

On September 16, two Dutch foreign exchange students, Jordi Deboer and Boyd Weijkamp, began a visit to NAHS hosted by senior Chris Mullaney.

Yordi and Boyd came to North Attleboro from a village a few miles outside Amsterdam and knew little about American culture upon their arrival to the US. Boyd claimed that the only thing that he knew about America was that “Donald Trump is crazy.”

In order to acquaint the boys with the culture of an American high school, Mullaney took Yordi and Boyd to a North Attleboro High School football game against Bishop Feehan High School. Both students were unfamiliar with American football and were amazed by the sport.

“I have never seen anything like this before. It’s very violent, we only have soccer, tennis and field hockey,” said Yordi.

Additionally, Yordi and Boyd also shadowed Mullaney throughout an entire school day at NAHS. When asked about their thoughts on the school and America’s education system, the boys both agreed that classes here were “much quieter” than classes in the Netherlands.

During lunch period, Yordi and Boyd were asked to compare the American lunch schedule to that of the Netherlands. Boyd explained that during the lunch period in the Netherlands, students have the option to either go home for lunch or go to a restaurant to eat. However, although they have a longer lunch periods in the Netherlands, their school days are also longer. The typical school day begins around 7 AM and lasts until 4 PM. Yordi also commented that food was more abundant here and students at the school were “always eating.”

Chris Mullaney also explained that both students thought it was odd that American students were allowed to wear athletic clothes to school.

Throughout the rest of the week, the two young men spent their days at Millis High School, having their own experience there.

Yordi and Boyd left on Thursday, September 22nd to return to their home country, leaving the Mullaney household. Chris Mullaney was especially disappointed to see them go, as he enjoyed their company the most.


Boyd Weijkamp, Joann Mullaney, Jordi Deboer and Chris Mullaney take a group photo


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