They met Headmaster Dave Eustis, they toured the building, they did a science experiment, they played some pickup basketball on the newly refurbished gym floor, they ate lunch, they learned about study skills.
In other words, the international students who are freshmen this year at Xavier High School had a busy day of orientation on Thursday. School officially begins the day after Labor Day, Sept. 3.
They were excited to be here, getting a jump start on being acclimated to the surroundings and what it means to be a Xavier student. Brendan Bell, the Assistant Director of Admissions and International Student Coordinator, led the students through the day. One other thing they also learned about was the school prayer, and that had Bell reflecting on the meaning.
"Every day, in our school prayer, we pray for the strength and passion to be leaders and pioneers,' and I can't think of a better embodiment of that ideal than these young men leave the comforts of home, from around the world, to embrace the challenge of being a Xavier man," Bell said.
"Providing these young men with the values and skills needed to be successful after graduation is only part of the picture – they truly enrich our community by being willing and able to share their unique cultures and perspectives with us."
The students generally take American first names while here.
New students (all from China unless listed otherwise):
Grade 9: Jilin Feng, Jiahao "Jimmy" Chen, Xiahou "Mayer" Zhang, Yike Liang, Wenbo "Steven" Bian, Junyue "David" Cao.
Grade 10: Zikun "Max" Ma, Rongzhou "Ron" Ma, Jan Kircher (Switzerland/Germany), Ziyang Zhang, Zexi "Chris" Huang
Returning students (all from China):
Grade 12: Zhoucheng "Charles" Sun, Shangzhen "Jack" Zou, Chanjun "Enzo" Gao
Grade 11: Qisen "Crane" Li, Songwen "Sam" Zhao, Zijun "Owen" Ou, Tianle "Samuel" Deng, Zhiyuan "Percy" Xu, Zhihua "Mark" Xu
Grade 10: Guanshen "Jason" Li, Boyu "Ethan" Shen.
Xavier is a private, Catholic all-boys high school that opened in 1963.