Cross-Cultural Learning in the United Kingdom

Katie Martin
Students Kolaiah Newkirk and Jonas Lewis-Capo traveled “across the pond” to England this summer to participate in Riverside Prep’s cultural exchange program. Riverside’s partnership with the Royal Hospital School in Suffolk has afforded many students the opportunity to immerse themselves in a different culture. During this ten-day trip, the young men enjoyed practical training and site-seeing led by Riverside’s new Commandant and Suffolk native, Lt Col Jonathan Pooley. 
While in the United Kingdom, Newkirk and Lewis-Capo joined students from the Royal Hospital School and other countries for a four-day military exercise at Royal Air Force (RAF) Barnham. During this camping experience, participants learned skills like squad tactics and first aid. Though the rainy weather presented an initial challenge for the campers, they quickly learned to adapt and remain flexible under pressure. “The training exercise was my favorite part of the trip because of the bonding between cadets. I learned a lot of skills and made new friends,” Newkirk said.
In addition to military training, students also enjoyed exploring places like Cambridge University, Buckingham Palace, and Big Ben. “If I was in a public school, I wouldn’t have the same opportunities as I do at Riverside. Through this trip, I gained practical leadership experience and made a lot of connections,” Lewis-Capo said. Both Newkirk and Lewis-Capo agreed their experience in the UK helped grow their understanding of intercultural relationships saying, “It’s an experience like no other; it gives you a different perspective of the world.”