From a GRSP Scholar
Top Learnings from My GRSP Year

by Smilla Luuk, 2017-18, Columbus State University, hosted by Muscogee and Harris County

Smilla Luuk from Stockholm, Sweden was hosted by the Muscogee R/C and Harris County R/C last year at Columbus State University and listed some things that she learned from her year in the United States. She writes:

Trying to summarize the year in Georgia in one page was really hard, so instead I wrote a list of things that the GRSP experience has taught me:

  • You can fit your entire life in two suitcases (or in a backpack if you are traveling with Spirit).
  • Leaving everything that is familiar and safe, and being exposed to a completely different lifestyle makes you think in new ways and reconsider things that you thought were obvious before.
  • Southern food is not for gluten intolerant people.
  • There are three things Americans associate with Sweden: ABBA, snow and Swedish Fish (although Swedish Fish are not Swedish).
  • Always talk to Rotarians as you know them, even if you do not recognize them. You have probably met them before at the conclave or at a meeting or on a social.
  • Professors who say you cannot wing a multiple choice test are lying.
  • It is okay to be alone. It can even be nice sometimes.
  • When a Rotarian says that their house is "pretty nice" you can assume it has an indoor elevator, a swimming pool and a movie theatre.
  • Choosing classes when the credits do not count makes you realize what you really are interested in.
  • The generosity and hospitality of Rotarians is truly amazing.
  • Marshmallow and cinnamon on top of roasted sweet potato is apparently a thing? As a main course?
  • The quote "You do not realize what you have until it is gone" is really true. Especially when it comes to public transportation.
  • Someone who was a total stranger to you just a few months ago can become the most important person in your life.
  • Never book a Greyhound from Chicago to Atlanta and expect it to work out fine.
  • No one knows all of the rules in American football. So you do not have to feel stupid when you do not understand, just eat some popcorn and join the applause.
  • Even though people might be very different from you, there is always something to bond over that can make you laugh together.
Posted by Lynn Clarke
December 6, 2018


This Year’s Posts: