I’m an immigrant! With the age of 24 I moved from Germany to Sweden and have lived there for 3,5 years now. A lot of people here don’t ask questions about how things are done in Germany because they are sure to know enough about Germany to know or because these two countries are so close to eachother that there can’t be much different. I use to tell some stories here and then when a conversation contains topics that are different in Germany as school system, healthcare or employment regulations. Often my listeners get big eyes in surprise about how such important parts are done in a pretty different way. Of course there are plenty of small things too like food, conversations and hobbies. There is so much to see and to learn even from a neighbour country. And I for myself have to admit it was a real eye-opener for me too. I become more open and tolerant. I don’t take things for granted that they have to be done a certain way. There are many many ways and we have the choice to pick what’s suits us best. I wouldn’t be able to same this country is much better than the other one and I woudln’t dare to either.
That’s I think it should be a rule that everyone has to live at least for half a year in another country. Becauce I believe that to be open minded can’t be completly achived by teaching in theory. You have to see it and experience it yourself! And I think the best way is really to life within another culture. Holidays don’t count in my opinion because most places you see are alreday modified to the tourists needs and expectations. So give everyone the chance to discover something new I’d say. And as usual I think it’s the goverment’s duty to clear the way and make it possible. Some schools are already giving the chance to study a year or a half in another country. That’s a good start! I’m not really sure if I would say everyone should spend that time somewhere else during the last years of school or if I would say they should even get the chance after they’ve finished school. Cause this experience in a bad case could lower the students grades. So they I guess it should be up the everyone to decide when to take this chance. But I would recommend it in the age between 17 and 25 cause I think it really could help you for your personal and career development.