A-SMYLE Alumni’s Advice to Future FLEX Students

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Jovana, Serbia-thumb
Jovana, Serbia – “I would recommend you to take at least one AP class to challenge yourself. You think it will be hard at the beginning, and it will be, but at the end – you won’t regret it! Also, if you have problems with your host family, you need to talk about them, not just wait for the problems to get solved on their own.”



Jelena, Serbia-thumb
Jelena, Serbia – “My advice to you would be not to be afraid to reach out and ask questions as well as make friends. People always appreciate if you reach out first and they like to be open-minded. They like that you ask questions as well as explaining new stuff about your country – even if they don’t know anything about it.  Don’t be afraid to try something new. Make as many friends as you can because they will truly make your year great.“


Nevena, Serbia-thumb

Nevena, Serbia – “My advice to the students that come after us would be to always get involved with as many activities as you can in school and in the community because that’s the easiest way to build relationships with other people. And especially, through volunteering – it will make you grow as a person. It’s just an amazing opportunity to find friends, make connections with people, and also see how your little time can mean so much to someone and a greater cause.”


Aleksandra, Serbia-thumb

Aleksandra, Serbia
– “The one thing I learned is that it is super easy to complain. Things do seem bad and hard at times but you have to learn to rationalize the pros and cons of every situation. We expect it to be so good and we expect it to be better than it is at home – and it’s not always.  So just see it for what it is, have realistic expectations, and enjoy everything while it’s there.”



Luka, Serbia-thumb


Luka, Serbia – “This is what I have to say to the next FLEX/A-SMYLE generation. When you have a problem, talk about it. Don’t just mention it to your friends back home or your family. Talk about it in your community and with your host family, or local coordinator, and surely they will find a way to help you.”



Stefan, Serbia-thumb

Stefan, Serbia – “Don’t expect too much because in that way, you’ll appreciate every little thing you get. Sometimes, you’re in a small community or a small school and there are moments that may seem disappointing. Have realistic expectations so you don’t feel disappointed. Make friends early, because that makes things a lot easier when you go through the rest of your year. Also, get involved in lots of extracurricular activities and stay involved in school activities – it will help a lot.”


Elvira, Serbia-thumb

Elvira, Serbia – “My biggest advice would be to try everything that we don’t have in Europe. Try new sports that we don’t have in Europe. Also, go to football and basketball games, since we have less school pride at home. Try everything – Skittles, Butterfingers, Mountain Dew – everything that you don’t have access to at home. Don’t be afraid to talk to your host family first, because the issues can be solved by the family – if it’s a really big problem, your local coordinator will help too. If you get a bad grade, don’t worry about it because you can fix it later. Take classes that we don’t have at home to try something new.”