Adapting to a new culture through lacrosse


Nandini Paidesetty

Coppell senior Mia Bonetto plays as a midfielder for the Coppell lacrosse team. She moved from Argentina in her sophomore year of high school and has been able to make friends through her lacrosse team.

Maya Palavali, Staff Writer

Walking into the halls of a new high school is hard enough. Coming from another country, the act is life changing.

“As soon as I got here, I was so confused, I didn’t even know English,” Coppell senior midfielder Mia Bonetto said. “It was a change for me.”

Bonetto came from Rosario, Santa Fe her sophomore year when her father got transferred for his job at AT&T.

I was living in the same house all my life,” Bonetto said. “I didn’t want to move.”

But Bonetto quickly grew accustomed to the new language and culture. She absorbed information from her daily life as well as her lessons.  When Bonetto decided to play lacrosse, she had a friendly face on the team. 

“We met in ESL class in our sophomore year,” Coppell senior midfielder Aoi Suzuki said.  “When she came to practice, I had never played lacrosse, so we got into it together.”

Bonetto came into the year with some similar athletic experience, making her transition on the team smoother. She played field hockey back in Argentina which is why she started to play lacrosse.She adjusted to life in America both socially and academically, notably her English speaking abilities. 

“Being in school every single day, you have to learn somehow,” Bonetto said. “You’re listening and trying to talk with people. So, you learn.”

Bonetto soon impressed the people around her with how perceptive she was to the new customs around her. 

I feel like a part of the community of Coppell. ”

— Mia Bonnetto

“Coming from Argentina at the age that she did and becoming accustomed to American sports culture is so amazing,” Coppell coach Logan Hendrick said. “She dove into lacrosse from the first moment that she stepped on the field.”

Bonetto is grateful for the support system she has gained from her team. 

“As soon as I started playing lacrosse, I didn’t know English at all,” Bonetto said. “My team was patient with me, which I really appreciate; they are always for me in case I need them.”

Bonetto was pleasantly surprised by the environment that Coppell High School fostered with their staff and students. Over the past year, Bonetto became a part of the National Honors Society, Spanish National Honors society and Red Jackets program. The activities were different from what she was used to, but she took it in stride. 

“I love how there’s a feeling of community, because we might not all be friends, but we all know each other,” Bonetto said.  “I wasn’t used to it; in Argentina the teachers weren’t as involved as they are with the students here. I really liked [Red Jackets] because we welcome new students. That’s what I like, I like how I know how it feels right.”

Her hardworking attitude goes beyond her academic and extracurricular life. 

“She takes everything we say and runs with it,” Hendrick said. “She is someone who has grown into an incredible athlete in the time that she’s been with us.”

Bonetto has committed to Texas State University with a major in international relations. 

“I like to be involved in international relationships,” Bonetto said. “It gives me an opportunity to travel and work in other countries.”

Bonetto has changed her mind about her original thoughts of moving to Coppell.

“Now I can see it was a good decision and I’m happy with it,” Bonetto said.  “I feel like a part of the community of Coppell.” 

Follow Maya (@mvpalovalley) and @CHSCampusNews on Twitter.