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Grand Rapids Christian High School has an Emphasis on Cross-Cultural Engagement and Hospitality

From September 22 to October 19, Grand Rapids Christian High School is hosting 13 students from Hamburg, Germany. This program is truly an exchange as students from the US and Germany get to know one another and each other's families. Both groups are heavily invested in making this the best experience possible.

A unique aspect of this year's visit are two Chinese International Students who are serving as shadow hosts for two of the German students. Mary Zhou and Cathy Xue have had the opportunity to get to know Jaqueline and Elena.

Mary enjoys this type of experience because she recognizes that understanding and speaking a language is best learned through natural conversation with someone who speaks the language. She also sees that language leads to knowing and understanding culture.

At the end of this school year, Mary will travel to Germany and serve as what she calls a "bridge," using her knowledge of English (her second language) to communicate to her German hosts what it means to be Chinese. 

Host Families Needed!

Are you interested in cross-cultural engagement? Would you consider being a host family to an international student? Host families are needed for students beginning in January 2019.

If you are interested or would like additional information, please contact Julie Watson at or call 616-574-5621. For a glimpse at our program, please visit the ISP web page and watch the host family video.