A long held Saint Gertrude tradition involves giving students the opportunity to travel abroad and to various sites in the United States when school is not in session. The international travel program has grown into the the Global Learning Program, offering students new ways to experience cultures in Europe and Haiti.
Academic exchanges allow students the chance to visit another country, stay in a home with their international peers, and explore the culture by attending school. Students involved in the academic exchange program take turns hosting and visiting in each other’s homes, forging friendships while exploring the culture and history with a native of the country.
In January of 2017, all the planning came to fruition as seven SGHS students hosted their counterparts from Colegio la Vall, an all-girls Catholic school in Barcelona, Spain. Then over Spring Break, the SGHS students had their turn to stay with their “sisters” in Barcelona, attending school and touring the area with their host families.
French students had the same opportunity to be immersed in the culture of Lycée Armand Peugeot in Valentigney, France and to host their French sisters in Richmond.
The first service immersion trip to Haiti was an immensely rewarding experience for the six students who participated, living out the Benedictine values together with Ms. Lindsay Holtz, Ms. Heather Sams, and Father James Griffin. Their work at the Orphanage in Hinche, Haiti made a lasting impression on all involved.