Exchange student Lina Mueller reflects on her junior year at SHS, and spring travels to Hawaii

She will return to Germany this summer after a family trip to Florida


Lina Mueller submission

Junior Lina Mueller captures a moment at the Nu‘uanu Pali Lookout in Oahu, Hawaii. “There is a beautiful viewing platform and you can see half of the island,” Mueller said.

Brazil Frazier, Reporter

Junior Lina Mueller is an exchange student from Germany who decided to come to America to learn a different culture and to see if her American high school experience is similar to what is portrayed in movies.

Although she realized America is not exactly how it is represented in movies, Mueller said she has enjoyed her high school experience here at Streetsboro.

Capturing a moment a prom is junior Lina Mueller (second from left) with seniors Briana Fields, Kaylee Hinze and a guest. (Julie Genovese)

“My favorite part about school is meeting my friends,” she said.

Mueller also described how nervous she was when she joined the soccer team. She had played soccer back home when she was younger and had grown up around it, since her whole family played. While she no longer plays back home (she does horse-back riding instead), she decided to try it out here in America to meet people and get involved.

 As she met the girls on the team, she realized how nice and welcoming they were.

Sophomore Lainey Klein, who played soccer with Mueller, noted how good of a player Mueller became.

“I broke my hand in the beginning of the season and was unable to play the whole season, but Lina made it a lot more enjoyable for me,” Klein said.

Mueller explained how she likes being able to connect more with the teachers here in America compared to in Germany, where the teachers are more strict and less engaged with students.

Laughing with her soccer teammate, senior Jordan Hehmeyer, at the Homecoming pep rally, is junior Lina Mueller. (Polly Dierkens)

Polly Dierkens has had Mueller in class all year, first for Graphic Design and, currently, for Digital Photography.

“I’ve really enjoyed talking with Lina and learning about how school in Germany differs from here,” Dierkens said. “She enjoyed this winter’s snow as much as I did, and it was fun seeing her take pictures in it with her classmates. I’ve also loved hearing about the trips she’s gotten to take with her host family throughout the year.”

Outside of school, Mueller spends time with her host family and her friends.

Sophomore Sydney Carmen explained how Mueller introduced her to German music and how it differs from popular music in the United States.

Not only did Mueller introduce Carmen to new things, Carmen also introduced Mueller to ice skating, Cane’s and Waffle House.

Claire Collins, another sophomore soccer player, said she has learned some things from Mueller about life as a German teenager. 

Junior Lina Mueller captures a moment at the Nu‘uanu Pali Lookout in Oahu, Hawaii. “There is a beautiful viewing platform and you can see half of the island,” Mueller said.

“One thing different there is she can’t drive till 17, so she doesn’t have her license yet,” Collins said. “There is also a different view of school dances. I know that both homecoming and prom were kinda disappointing to her because in the media they are played up as major events.”

Muller also enjoys traveling. Her favorite place to visit so far has been Hawaii, which she visited in the spring with other exchange students.

“It was the best week of my life,” she said.

They visited Pearl Harbor, the Diamond Head volcano and the Polynesian Cultural Center, enjoyed a luau, and visited beaches where they did yoga, snorkeled and surfed.

“We had a half hour surfing lesson on land and were on the water for one hour,” Mueller said. “It was so much easier than I thought it would be. It was so much fun but the paddling is so hard if you don’t have the arm strength.”

Not only was this her first experience with surfing, but the yoga and snorkeling were also new to Mueller. “It was so fun,” she said. “I saw so many beautiful colored fish.”

She also saw whales and sea turtles on a boat tour.

Mueller is going back to Germany this summer after she travels to Florida with her family.

Although Mueller will be excited about going back to her life in Germany, she said she will miss her host family, friends, the food, and the excitement of America.