FORT WORTH, Texas - The city of Fort Worth opened its doors and hearts this week to students and teachers from a sister city in France.
The city signed a declaration last week to become sister cities with Nimes, France. It ushered in an opportunity to have foreign exchange students visit Fort Worth and attend local schools.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity for the students. We’ve had them in class several times. Some of them have gotten to accompany the students both at home with family on family expeditions and some of others. We’ve had them out at the stockyards, got to watch the running of the bulls so to speak, got them over to Billy Bob’s to see some line dancing. So they’ve had a real taste of Texas culture and we’ve shared a lot of experiences together,” said Marvin Van-Griffith, a French and German teacher at World Languages Institute.
Van-Griffith said it was great to see how many similarities Fort Worth has with the culture in the south of France.
“Their culture in the south of France is based on the bull, as is ours. They have a lot of experience being close to Spain. They share with us a strong connection with Spanish-speaking culture. So, it’s been great to discover these similarities, along with some exciting differences,” he said.
Carlos Turcios has been one of the host students. He said it’s been wonderful to be able to learn different languages.
“Actually, it’s surprising that they have this similar concept of actually bilingualism and trilingualism. They’re learning Spanish and also learning English. So we have very, a lot of similarities between both cultures,” he said.
The French students got to learn about big burgers, steak, rodeos, Cowboys and everything else that makes the Texas culture unique.
One visitor said Downtown Fort Worth has been his favorite thing to see. Another enjoyed the Fort Worth Zoo and the Japanese Garden.
When asked to described Texas in one word, they all said “big.”