Oak Ridge High School Principal Paul Burke, left, accepted the 2013-14 Global Education Excellence Award to recognize his school’s support of international student exchange. He's seen here with, left to right, Leonie Pulz from Germany, Nichakorn Thana-dachophol from Thailand and Glen Swedelson, director of Guidance. Courtesy photo

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Oak Ridge receives Global Education Excellence Award

By From page B6 | May 14, 2014

Oak Ridge High School has received national recognition for excellence in global education from EF High School Exchange Year.

The EF High School Exchange Year Global Education Excellence Award is presented annually to high schools that demonstrate an extraordinary commitment to international understanding and global awareness. Oak Ridge High School was one of a select group of high schools/districts recognized across the United States for the 2013-14 school year.

“Oak Ridge High School has shown an outstanding commitment to offering a global education,” said Dan Sodervall, president of EF High School Exchange Year. “By welcoming exchange students into the classrooms, Oak Ridge has created new and unique learning opportunities not just for the exchange students, but for the American students and faculty as well.”

This year, Oak Ridge welcomed two EF High School Exchange Year exchange students. Not only were the students accepted into the school, they became an integral part of the school’s academic and extracurricular life, involving the greater community in the exchange experience. The school is also host to Julia Garcia from Brazil, a Rotary Youth Exchange student.

“My experience at Oak Ridge has been amazing,” said EF student Nichakorn Thana-dachophol. “All my teachers are helpful and really care about me. They understand that I am not an American student and they keep in touch with me.   was able to take an art class which is more advanced than a similar class in my school in Thailand”

Leonie Pulz of Germany added, “I appreciate that people are so nice and help me with everything.  The school spirit at Oak Ridge surprised me.  I especially enjoy my choir and history classes.”

Local exchange coordinator Cheryl Young added, “We thank Oak Ridge High School for welcoming this year’s students from around the globe. The community and visiting students shared an unforgettable experience thanks to the generosity of Oak Ridge’s administration, teachers, students and families.”

Headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., EF High School Exchange Year has been committed to promoting international understanding and global awareness for over 30 years. The organization brings more students to the United States each year than any other high school exchange program. Since 1979, EF High School Exchange Year has matched more than 100,000 enthusiastic students from around the world with caring host families across the United States.

To learn more about getting involved with high school exchange in this community, contact EF High School Exchange Year local coordinator Cheryl Young at (916)505-1638. You may also call the EF High School Exchange Year main office at 1-800-447-4273 or visit efexchangeyear.org.

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