The Sagemont School

Sagemont, A College Prep in Weston, Provides a Home-stay Program Attracting Students Worldwide

Sagemont’s international home-stay program allows foreign high school students to pursue their academic goals as well as learn American culture in a college prep setting.


Weston, FL -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/04/2010 -- The Sagemont School has always had an international flavor with over 40 countries represented by its student body. As a result, it was natural for the school to develop an international home-stay program that attracts accomplished high school students who want to study abroad. According to Sagemont President, Dr. Brent Goldman, “The International Student Program at Sagemont is extremely unique. There are many private college prep high schools in the country that host international students but in a dorm situation. At Sagemont, our international students live with local host families, which enables the students to become fully immersed in our language and culture.”

Currently in its 4th year, the international program has attracted students from Bermuda, Bahamas, Brazil, Germany, Venezuela, China, Korea, Taiwan, Serbia, Croatia, Russia, Japan, and Norway.

Sagemont’s ESOL teacher, Erin Gustitis, once an International student herself, mentors the students to ensure the smoothest transition. Her job is made easier by the fact that Sagemont is so culturally diverse. Beth Hjartnes, Director of Admissions and International Enrollment, said, “South Florida is known for being an eclectic cultural area. Therefore, international students have a great opportunity to fit in with ease.”

School in the United States is different for many of these students because they are used to more classes packed into a week’s schedule. Yuki Nozasa, a Sagemont graduate from Japan said, “Once I became used to school at Sagemont, it would have been difficult to go back to Japan. I like this system better because we study fewer things at a time, and this allows me to get a better understanding of my subjects.”

Sagemont frequently fields calls from families abroad who are interested in their program. International students want to come to Sagemont to learn English fluently in order to better their opportunities when they return to their own country. Students, who are from English speaking countries, come seeking better educational opportunities. The Sagemont School is popular because of its small size and beautiful location in South Florida near to beaches and noted attractions. Sagemont’s study abroad program offers ESOL instruction and English immersion. The college prep high school curriculum includes a variety of Honors and Advanced Placement choices. Families are happy to find that Sagemont is a SEVIS approved school and can facilitate I-20 Visas.

Once here, most international students decide to remain in the USA to study at an American university. “We currently have several international graduates attending American universities and we continue to ‘keep tabs’ on them. They return to Weston for the holidays to be with their home-stay families when they cannot fly home”, states Hjartnes.

Most students commit to one year but end up staying to graduate. So Jung Lee, a senior from Korea, has lived with Beth Hjartnes and her family for four years. Lee said, “I came to Sagemont to study for one year in 9th grade. I am now a senior and my family is coming to my graduation. Sagemont has prepared me for college both educationally and socially. My home-stay family has given me constant direction and support and will continue to guide me in my college decisions.”

“Having an international student live with us has given me and my family a global perspective that is priceless,” said Hjartnes. Sojung’s desire to learn and study was a great lesson for our entire family. She is a model for all American students to learn by.”

The Sagemont School offers a study abroad private high school program with home stay located in Florida. The Sagemont School is very unique because of its small size and popular location in South Florida located near beaches and popular attractions. This study abroad program offers ESOL instruction and English immersion. The college prep high school curriculum includes a variety of Honors and Advanced Placement choices. Sagemont is a SEVIS approved school serving 800 students from kindergarten through high school graduation. SEVIS I-20 Visas available. For more information contact Beth Hjartnes at, (954) 389-2454.