Swedish students visit HHS
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Every year, Hillsborough IB seniors anxiously await the arrival of 44 Swedish students who arrive in Tampa by boat. And it’s no normal boat either: the Swedes are tasked with handling, repairing and maintaining a massive sailboat that they sleep and study on.
After arriving on Saturday, some of the Swedes were able to hangout with and meet some of Hillsborough’s students. Some seniors, such as Hailey Dansby and Tegan Smith, took their Swedes to celebrate and get to know them.
Then on Monday, the Swedes went to Hillsborough and shadowed their respective Hillsborough host student for the day.
Josh Carpenter and his Swede, Joaquin Lindblom, went on “a tour of the school,” Carpenter said. “He liked learning about the school’s history and culture and how it’s changed throughout the years.”
After school Monday, “a few of the hosts and Swedes all went to the Chassahowitzka River and kayaked and swam at the spring,” said Olivia Lane. “It was really fun hanging out with my Swede, and she even showed me a bunch of her Swedish music.”
Another group of hosts and Swedes went to Clearwater Beach and then went back to the sailboat to learn about how the Swedes live at sea. “We learned about all their past voyages on the boat, and we got a tour of the ship. The students do all their work on the ship, which is crazy because they have to work the sails and anchor the ship manually,” said Maggie Kratzer. Tim Elko agreed with Kratzer and said that “it was a very unique experience to see a boat with such big sails.”
The Swedes leave early Friday morning for their next stop in Miami. Tampa was their final “study port” where they learn about the culture and people of the area.