Families of every nationality and background recognize the advantages of graduating with both a U.S. high school degree and the globally recognized German International Abitur. When students study at GISW, they benefit from our network of over 140 German Schools Abroad, who share best practices among each other and have especially strong ties within each geographic region. Our carefully developed and highly acclaimed bilingual, interdisciplinary curriculum provides students with an excellent foundation in world languages and STEM subjects.
In a world where many professions require multi-cultural cooperation, fluently speaking more than one language has obvious benefits. A growing body of research shows that, besides just being able to communicate with more people, bilingual children think more flexibly and perform better academically than do monolingual children. Students who begin a bilingual education in preschool and continue through high school obtain the greatest benefits. At our school, bilingualism is at the heart of everything we do.
Faculty at GISW are highly trained experts in their fields. The majority holds advanced degrees (Master of Art or Master of Science, or the European equivalent).
GISW graduates benefit from a great deal of choice when applying to colleges and universities around the world. Students who earn the German International Abitur can enroll at German universities for most fields of study, only highly desirable or competitive programs require a specific minimum final grade. Our graduates are regularly admitted to selective colleges and universities in the US, Canada, and also all over Europe, where higher education is often free or costs significantly less than in North America. Studying at a European University can represent a tuition savings of $100,000 or more. University admissions directors around the world acknowledge that applicants holding the German International Abitur stand out in the big pool of applicants. Our graduates often find that they can receive college credit for coursework they have completed as part of their regular curriculum at GISW.
Economic research has revealed that American employees, who speak and write German fluently as an additional language, have a distinct professional advantage over their fellow employees who speak French or Spanish in addition to English: not only are they more in- demand, they also earn more. Our inquisitive, independent thinkers who achieve the German International Abitur are well-prepared to move on to lifelong academic and professional success.
In a country such as the U.S. that recognizes the value of Germany´s contributions to industry, innovations, engineering and sciences, bilingual German speakers are sought after by many employers.
German Businesses Reach Far and Wide
Nine of the world´s 50 largest companies are German. Many German companies are household names like Adidas, Volkswagen, BMW, Bayer, Siemens, and Lufthansa. Others are less well known yet still influential and form the backbone of science and industry like Carl Zeiss, Leica, BASF, and many more. German companies employ over 800,000 people in the United States. German subsidiaries in the US are growing and investing heavily according to the 2019 German American Business Outlook (GABO) survey conducted by the German American Chambers of Commerce (GACCs) and the Representative of German Industry and Trade (RGIT).
Learning to live in and interact with a culture and relate to its people involves more than knowing how to order a meal in a restaurant or ask for directions. GISW students are not only truly bilingual: they´re also authentically bicultural. They possess the awareness, knowledge, and sensitivity of local norms and customs to move effortlessly between two cultures. This opens a world of opportunities to communicate and connect with people.
Children who are able to communicate with their parents and grandparents in a shared language establish deeper bonds and enjoy a stronger connection to their family history and their own unique cultural heritage. These strong roots within one´s past can also lead to happier children who are better prepared to weather the natural ups and downs of life. In fact, long-term benefits of being raised in a bilingual environment include increased brain plasticity and the potential to delay onset of dementia.
Develop Deeper Relationships
“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.” - Nelson Mandela.
While you will find many German switching to speak English with visitors when they sense an accent, it is truly a closer and much deeper connection when you can speak their mother tongue at a fluency level that does not prompt them to switch. The advantages of being able to communicate in someone else’s native language are undeniable. Expressing your thoughts becomes more precise when you have multiple languages at your disposal. This type of personal connection can lead to very productive and long-lasting business relationships.
With parents often in globally oriented careers, many GISW alumni have attended at least one more of the 140 German Schools in our network around the world. Students at our schools are very open and welcoming because they know first-hand how it feels to be the new kid on the block. Many of the friendships that form at GISW last a life-time with strong connections across countries and continents.