As the world moves closer to our doorsteps—and fingertips—with unprecedented access to global issues, increased diversity in local communities, and heightened awareness of the larger worldview, the importance of traveling abroad and engaging in global education has become paramount. What once was considered a luxury now demands consideration as a higher priority, and De Smet Jesuit offers several opportunities with its growing global education program that ranges from hosting a visiting student from Taiwan to living with a family in Peru.
Students Gain Skills Employers Want
In addition to gaining critical interpersonal skills such as how to work with diverse peers and adapt to different environments, students who have global experience set themselves apart and are more competitive during the recruitment process for potential employment. “This is due to the soft skills that are acquired during the period abroad,” said Kayla Cabrera, Director of Human Resources and Benefits for CIC. “These are regarded as skills the student possesses rather than skills the student claims to possess."
"Curiosity, tolerance for ambiguity, leadership, communication, analytical and critical thinking skills – all of these are tangibly exemplified to employers and colleges with the successful completion of an abroad program.”
Students Appreciate Their Own Heritage and Larger Worldview
Aside from future employment advantages, in the short-term, students who have participated in global education opportunities report that they—
- Better understand cultures and appreciate languages different from their own,
- Realize the impact of religion in society values,
- Discover how much they have in common with fellow teenagers around the world,
- Strengthen relationships with their brothers and families from foreign countries,
- Feel harmony and camaraderie on a global level, and
- Grow in appreciation for their own family heritage.
“My father’s ancestors immigrated from Ireland to the US, and his side of the family loves their Irish heritage,” said Sean Dolan ’18 after hosting Irish exchange student in the 2018 spring semester.
“Paul and his life stories from Letterkenny, Ireland, allowed me to deeper understand my father, and deeply appreciate my own view of home as I represented it while Paul was here.”
Global Education Opportunities at De Smet Jesuit
At De Smet Jesuit we offer—
- Cultural engagement trips to major cities around the world such annual excursions to France, Spain, or Italy;
- Immersion trips and hosting opportunities to share day-to-day experiences of families such as the annual exchange with Peru, Taiwan, and Ireland;
- Pilgrimage adventures that follow Jesuit footsteps and trek through frontiers such as the 2017 canoe trip to Canada; and
- Service trips where students volunteer, fellowship, and reflect in partnership with Jesuit schools for communities in need of assistance such as the recent trip to Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria.
To recognize the significant efforts of students who commit to expanding their worldview, De Smet Jesuit offers students a path to earn the Global Education Certificate. This honor is bestowed upon extraordinary seniors who complete four levels of world language, stay involved in extracurricular groups, participate in an off-campus global experience, and deliver a capstone presentation.
Visit our photo gallery from recent trips, discover upcoming study abroad opportunities, or hear what our students say they learn from their adventures at the Global Education webpage. For more information on any of the excursions, please contact David Cabrera, Spanish teacher and Director of Global Education.