Mariner student to be U.S. ambassador

By Sara Bruestle | Apr 24, 2013
Adeo Carter

A Mariner High School student has been selected as a Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Ambassador and the winner of a full scholarship to be an exchange student in Germany.

Adeo Carter, a Mariner junior, will be one of 250 high school students from across the United States to serve as U.S. ambassadors in Germany.

As a Congress-Bundestag scholar, he will live with a host family and attend a German high school for 10 months abroad, while experiencing the German culture and learning the German language by total immersion.

“I felt it would be an amazing opportunity,” Adeo said. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience to have a year-long stay in another country, essentially for free.”

The Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Ambassador Program (CBYX) was created to strengthen ties between Germany and the United States through citizen diplomacy. More than 17,000 students have participated in the program since 1983.

Adeo, 16, flies to Washington, D.C. on Aug. 5. He will go through orientations there and meet with American government officials before heading to Germany for more of the same. He’ll also receive German language lessons to help him communicate abroad.

“I’m interested in having a career that allows me to travel internationally between Europe and the U.S.,” he said, adding that he wouldn’t mind working as an interpreter. “This is a good foot in the door.”

Although he isn’t required to know German beforehand, Adeo has studied the language for two years at Mariner.

In fact, it was Adeo’s German teacher, Marianne Sebastian, who encouraged him to apply to the program. She had been an ambassador in Germany when she was in high school, and her experiences aboard were the reason she got into teaching the language.

Adeo said Sebastian tells all of her junior and senior students to apply. He thought he had the right background to represent the United States and Congress in Germany, so he applied.

“The thing I’m most looking forward to is getting a chance to go to school in another country and really absorb the language while over there,” he said. “What better way to learn how to speak and understand a language than living there?”

Adeo was a member of the NJROTC program at Mariner for two years, no longer available, which he said made him patriotic, as well as knowledgeable in American military and politics.

“I think it’s a great opportunity for him,” said Anarcha Corey, Adeo’s mom. “It’s one that I wish I could have myself, but I’m not as brave as he is.

“I wouldn’t want to be dropped in a country where I don’t know anyone or anything and left on my own for a year, especially at 16. I think it would be scary.”

Adeo was a Running Start student at Everett Community College for two years, and plans to finish an associate’s degree there when he returns from Germany.

He then hopes to transfer to Eastern Washington University or Western Washington University for his bachelor’s.

Adeo said he is proud to be selected as U.S. ambassador to help keep relations high with Germany, adding that high school students are great for the job.

“Teenagers are young enough to have their whole life ahead of them to tell their story of how it was [abroad],” he said. “It’s mouth to ear, mouth to ear, and then pretty soon there are a few thousand people who know what it’s like over there.”

The CBYX program is jointly funded by the U.S. Congress and the German Bundestag, and in the United States is overseen by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

The program was founded in celebration of the 300th anniversary of the first German immigration to America. For more information, go to www.usagermanyscholarship.org.

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