Today is J Day! A day for international visitors and their American hosts to celebrate and share cultural diversity, American customs, and highlight the J1 Exchange Visitor Program!
Since CAEP is an agricultural program, we celebrated our J Day early as our trainees and interns are busy learning and gaining harvest experience on this beautiful August day. Our third annual CAEP Fest was a weekend for our international participants and American hosts to come together to celebrate their heritage and cultural diversity, learn more about American customs from the local community members, partake in a local festival, build friendships, and make connections with people from countries around the globe.
Although we already celebrated our “J Day,” today is still an important day for us as we celebrate the power of the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program. We see first hand every day how cultural exchanges play a significant and very important role in U.S. public diplomacy. To hear more about what our international participants had to say about their weekend celebrating cultural diversity and American customs, read below:
Iryna Zoricheva (Ukraine)
“In the USA, people are polite and sociable. They talk to you as a friend even if they see you the first time. As for meals, pizza and burgers are the food of choice, unlike in Ukraine. A new thing I learned is that football in the US is a totally different game than the football we play in Ukraine called soccer. At CAEP Fest I was surprised about the parade and how candy was given to children. So this is just a couple things what was new for me!”
Felipe Lacerda Hayashi (Brazil)
“I’m so glad to have the opportunity to know amazing people that I will never forget. You are part of the most amazing experience of my life. Thanks to all the moments that we share and I hope that we will share a lot more on another part of the world”
Diego Ochoa (Colombia)
“My experience at CAEP Fest made me realize we are all the same. No matter what culture we are, if we are poor or rich, our genders, race or nationalities– We are all one!”
Rodine Exume (Haiti)
“Meeting Americans at CAEP Fest was a great thing and a big experience!” Now I know a lot about them, their culture, and the way they think! It was a really nice and friendly moment!”