CB Exchange Award

EF High School Exchange Year local coordinator Daniel Rathe, right, presents the Global Education Excellence Award to, from left, Cedar Bluffs High School Principal Tina Hanzel and exchange students Sebastian Eliasson of Sweden and Fenja Siemens of Germany. 

Cedar Bluffs High School recently received national recognition for its commitment to supporting global education and welcoming exchange students into its classrooms and community.

The high school was honored with the EF High School Exchange Year Global Education Excellence Award, which is presented annually to high schools that demonstrate an extraordinary commitment to international understanding and global awareness.

Cedar Bluffs was one of a select group of high schools and districts recognized across the United States for the 2018-19 school year by EF High School Exchange Year, which is a national leader in high school exchange programs.

“By welcoming exchange students into the classrooms, Cedar Bluffs School District has created new and unique learning opportunities for not just the exchange students, but the American students and faculty as well,” said Bob Fredette, president of EF High School Exchange Year.

This year, the school welcomed two EF High School Exchange Year exchange students — Sebastian Eliasson of Sweden and Fenja Siemens of Germany.

“Our exprerience at Cedar Bluffs has been amazing,” Eliasson said. “We were able to participate in all the sports that were offered which is something I would not have had the experience of trying back home.”

According to EF High School Exchange Year local coordinator Daniel Rathe, not only were the students accepted into the school, but they became an integral part of the school’s academic and extracurriculuar life and were involved in the greater community during their exchange experience.

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“We thank Cedar Bluffs for welcoming this year’s students from around the globe,” he said. “The community and visiting students shared an unforgettable experience thanks to the generosity of the Cedar Bluffs High School administration, teachers, students and families.”

Siemens also thanked the school and community for their support during her time in Cedar Bluffs.

“I will never forget my time here, and know I will always be welcome,” she said.

Rathe added that the local EF High School Exchange Year program is already looking for host families for next school year and beyond.

Those interested in serving as a host family, or getting involved with high school exchange in the community, can contact Rathe at 402-499-6039 or daniel.rather@efexchangeyear.org.

More information about EF High School Exchange Year can be found online at www.efexchangeyear.org.