Employee Spotlight: Cheryl McDonald
October 6, 2015

  1. What is your name and job title?

Cheryl McDonald, Residential Manager

  1. When did you start working at gphomestay?

June, 2012

  1. Where have you traveled to outside of the United States?

Mexico, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic,  St. John, St. Thomas, Ireland, Amsterdam, Great Britain

  1. What other languages do you speak? 


  1. Please describe a time when you experienced culture shock in a funny way.

My first job was an Assistant at an Old Time Photo Shop.  It was a huge tourist attraction in this summer town and often we got a lot of business from Canada.  Well part of my job was to assist the ladies with picking out their outfits that they would like to wear in the photo.  I quickly learned that the part of Canada they were coming from did not promote wearing under garments.  I was shocked so to say numerous times and in the end we ended selling under garments at the photo shop as a new rule went into effect that you could not wear the old time clothing without proper under attire.

  1. What was your favorite food that you tried in another country?

Chocolate covered Belgium waffles (in Amsterdam)

  1. If you could physically transport yourself to any place in the world at this moment, where would you go?

I would go to Bora Bora, to stay in one of the huts over the clear blue water would be a dream come true

  1. If you could be instantly fluent in one language that you currently do not speak, which would it be?


  1. If you could eat one food in any quantity for the rest of your life with no ill effects whatsoever, what food would you choose?

Pizza, I love it anytime of day and never get sick of it

  1. Why do you like working in international education?

I like working in international education because it opens my mind to another culture.  Often I take for granted all that is available to me here in America and it is nice to learn first-hand from our students what educational struggles those in other countries are facing.  I like helping students understand that just because something is a certain way at home it is not necessarily going to be the same here.  It takes time and doesn’t come naturally to our students, but it is very rewarding when they finally understand something that was once so culturally foreign to them.

  1. What do you think is the greatest benefit of hosting a student?

The greatest benefit of hosting a student is that you will be the person that the student thousands of miles away from home feels most comfortable with.  You will be able to share your family’s beliefs and culture and open a student’s mind to another way of life.  You can try new foods that your student enjoys, learn about Chinese cultures and traditions and most importantly ease a parents mind, knowing their child is safe and well cared for in your home.

  1. What do you think is the biggest benefit of studying abroad?

The fact that you will not only know one education system, but two.  You will be able to see that there is not just one way or philosophy of learning, but several.  Through experimenting with various way of educating yourself you are able to become a more well-rounded individual who is open for change.


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