The student news site of Owatonna High School.

Leticia Russo Mateus

October 18, 2016

Exchange student Leticia Russo Mateus from Brazil
Ibrahim Abdullahi
Exchange student Leticia Russo Mateus
from Brazil

Leticia Russo Mateus, hails from Belo Horizonte, Brazil. She is 15 years old, making her the youngest of the three exchange students. Russo Mateus came here to learn English and the American culture. Russo Mateus said, “I came here a couple years ago and liked it so I came back again, this time for educational purposes.”

Regarding her thoughts on OHS, she said, “It’s different from Brazil, but I like it the classes and the teachers. They have great class organization, and although I’m only here for a semester, I’m liking it a lot.” Russo Mateus has a twin brother who is currently in Taiwan, and she likes music and playing the piano. She wants to be a lawyer, and takes defensive fighting classes back in Belo Horizonte. Russo Mateus not only has learned English, but also speaks Italian. After her one year here, she plans to go back to Brazil and finish school, then maybe come back here for college.

Russo Mateus had a positive outlook on the distinct changes in culture, “The weather here is very cold, but I’m excited about winter. The people here are friendly. The food is different, but a good kind of different, and I’m trying things I wouldn’t normally try. I love the football games here, because we don’t have American football back in Brazil.” Her favorite classes include math, history and philosophy. Russo Mateus noted that we don’t have philosophy as a class here at OHS. As for why she enjoys philosophy, Russo Mateus said, “You get to think about life and the subject brings up great questions, like why things are the way they are.” The Minnesota winter is proving to a source of anticipation for Russo Mateus,“I’m not ready for it. I’m kind of scared. I can’t imagine how it could get colder than this, but at the same time I’m excited for it.” Some of the cultural differences have proven to be a pleasant surprise for her, “I like the holidays. I’m curious about it and I like the way things work around here. We don’t have a Target or Starbucks in Brazil, but you guys have it here and I like that.”

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