We’re so excited that Marlen Hahn will be joining us this summer as a girls’ counselor! This truly international young woman is multi-lingual and multi-talented. We’re already hoping for zumba in the pool house with Marlen leading the way! Please join us in welcoming Marlen!
Where are you from? Tell us a little about where you grew up.
I grew up in Germany, Belgium, and France. My father works in the administration of the German armed forces. That's why I had the opportunity to grow up in three different countries. When I was four and a half years old, we moved to Belgium, where we lived at the Supreme Headquarters of the Allied Forces in Europe. There I first attended an international kindergarten and after that, an international school. Afterwards, we moved to France, where I attended a French/international school as well. Since 2007, I’ve been back in Germany and live near Dortmund (and slightly miss my nomadic life).
What do you do during the school year?
I am in the fourth semester of studying English and economics to become a teacher for vocational schools. I spend most of my time during the year studying. But if there's time, I love to travel and to learn new things.
Tell us a little about your family.
I am an only child. I live with my mom and she's my best friend. We're a great team and have a fabulous relationship. My dad doesn't live close to us, so I don't see him that often but we see each other a couple times a year. Even thought they’re not together, my parents get along with each other and we spend a lot of time with each other.
What do you like to do in your free time?
In 2015, doing Zumba became a passion for me. It helps to burn energy and to clear one's mind. I also love painting and reading. Because of my studies, I read more for university than for my own purposes. Once a week, I go swimming. If I see something beautiful, I have to capture it with the camera to make memories. Spending time with friends and my family is always fun and helpful. I think it's important to have people you can talk to. Besides talking, watching Disney movies and taking walks are also things I do for quality time with my friends.
What would campers be surprised to learn about you?
Even if I appear to be serious, the kids can have a lot of fun with me and can learn that I'm a warm-hearted, open-minded, and sensitive person.
What are you looking foward to sharing with campers about your life/culture this summer?
I look forward to comparing games I played as a child with those of the campers. And I also want to share language skills, if the kids are interested. A cultural exchange will be great and interesting!
What advice can you give to campers about being away from home?
It's totally normal that we miss our home and family. But the international staff is also far away from home, so we are all in the same situation. It's normal to feel sad sometimes, but we can talk about it whenever the kids want to. We will have fun and do our best to make this summer the best one so far so that we can talk and daydream about it with our family and friends at the end of summer.
What can the campers do to get on your good side?
Having fun, being themselves, and especially being honest is important. Even if the situation isn't that good, honesty will bring everyone forward. With fun and honesty, the summer will be a great one!
It doesn't matter if a child is more introverted or extroverted. As long as we are all ourselves, the work and life together will be marvelous!
What do you hope to get out of this summer?
A lifetime experience! I think the time at camp will help me to grow and to learn new things about myself. I want to learn from the kids and my colleagues and have a great summer experience with a lot of fun together at camp and in nature. And at the end I hope that the kids will know that learning is a lifelong process.