International Students Increase Understanding

From All Over Europe!

Gross Catholic is excited to welcome nine international exchange students this year. These students are usually placed at Gross Catholic through three different programs.

International Programs

The first is Global Outreach. This program is a unique Catholic student exchange program that facilitates exchanges between high schools and church organizations in the United States and Central/Eastern Europe. Global Outreach encourages Christians to grow their faith and servant leadership abilities.

Global Outreach selects young Catholics from churches in Central/Eastern and Northern Europe to spend their junior year of high school in Catholic schools in the Midwest (Wisconsin, Nebraska and Minnesota). The Midwest focus is so that the students might learn how everyday American Catholics live their faith in a tradition of freedom. At the same time, the internationals have the opportunity to share their strong faith commitment with our youth our schools and our parishes, helping to strengthen the spirituality of American Catholics, especially young Catholics.

Another exchange program is EF (Education First) Cultural Exchange. This program fosters global citizenship through cross-cultural understanding, tolerance, open-mindedness, and the creation of global families. This organization works in over 50 countries with over 600 schools and offices.

Lastly, some students are placed at Gross Catholic through the International Student Exchange program. ISE exchange students bravely leave the comfort of home to experience a new culture and way of life in America. Their program encourages students to experience personal growth, increase understanding, and reinforce dedication to service and cooperation. Through the high school exchange experience, students become more well-rounded citizens of the world.

Our nine international exchange students join Gross Catholic from four different countries including Spain, France, Germany and Slovakia. Meet some of our foreign exchange students:


Hi, my name is Martin and I am from Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia. My experience has been great from the very first moment. I joined the football team before the start of the school year, so I entered a very good community. I love it at school too. Gross Catholic High School is full of welcoming young people who are very curious about exchange students from Europe.

High school students in the United States have many benefits in comparison to my school in Bratislava. For example, students here can play sports at their school and compete against other schools. In Slovakia, our schools are mostly for education. I had to join a sports club in Slovakia to be able to play sports. So sports is one of the things I enjoy the most about being here.

I am excited about many new interesting things and activities, which studying at Gross Catholic offers. One of those is a personal finance class. People at a young age should study more about finances. I did not have this kind of class at my school and that is why I decided to add it to my schedule here.

International student MartinI enjoy being part of this school because of the great people who create an amazing community. Particularly, our house system, the competition that it brings and the friendly atmosphere. I also admire how supportive and passionate people are at Gross Catholic. The thing that I was the most scared of entering a new school was obviously if I am going to feel welcomed. I can say that I am not afraid anymore because it took less than a week for me to feel at home. I am thankful every day to be a part of the big Cougar family.
(Photo: Summer holidays with Martin’s family in the High Tatras.)


My name is Matheo and I am from France, precisely Alsace, just next to Germany. I think that the best experience that I have had so far was the sorting ceremony with the four-way tug of war. In my high school we do not have houses like at Gross Catholic so it was a new experience for me and I really liked it. The ambiance is awesome!

In general, school here is very different compared to my French high school because in France I usually do not finish my school day until 5 or 6 pm. Sports are much more important here than in France and I enjoy it.  Also the dress code is much different here. In France I am in a private Catholic high school but the uniform is not mandatory. I find that the uniform brings everyone around one outfit without making any differences and it is a good thing.

MateoFor the moment, I am living a great experience. I am discovering a lot of new things like traditions (sorting ceremony and houses), I am also learning new subjects that we do not have in France like personal finance and I am very happy to be able to do this at Gross Catholic.

I am thankful to Gross Catholic High School for giving me the opportunity to join their school for one year and for giving me the opportunity to be included.
(Photo: Mateo with all of his grandparents, before his departure to the United States)


HelenaMy name is Helena. I am an exchange student from Munich, Germany. The school system in America is very different compared to the school system in Germany. One difference is that here I can take classes I am interested in like sports medicine, which I really like. I was really excited to try cheerleading and now I am very happy to be part of the team. I had a great time at Gross Catholic so far and I am very excited for the upcoming year.

(Photo: Helena in her Gross Catholic cheerleading uniform)

International students

Andrea (Spain), Gaspard (France), Matheo (France), Helena (Germany), Heloise (France) and Martin (Slovakia) on one of their first days at Gross Catholic

International students at the Homecoming Dance

Matheo (France), Luis (Spain), Julia (Spain), Lucas (Spain) and Julia (Spain) enjoying the Homecoming in Hollywood dance.

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About Gross Catholic

Gross Catholic, a co-educational, college preparatory high school, began its proud heritage of academic excellence rooted in the Marianist tradition in 1968. We consider ourselves one of the best Catholic schools in Omaha, Bellevue, and Papillion. The school motto Dux Esto (“Be a Leader”) is at the core of its extraordinary mission, innovative spirit, and fundamental values. The school offers a challenging environment and outstanding quality of life, both in academics and co-curricular activities, with a strong focus on STREAM (Science, Technology, Religion, Engineering, the Arts, and Mathematics) education. The spirit of Christian service and giving back is part of everything the school does. Gross Catholic’s top-tier status is reflected in its talented faculty, staff, and coaches who take great pride in seeing virtually every graduate head to college, often to the most prestigious domestic and international universities and service academies. Together with families and alumni, Gross Catholic forges relationships for a lifetime, helping to ready the next generation to be exemplary, principled leaders of the world.

To discover the Gross Catholic difference, contact us at 402.734.2000 or visit our Admissions page.