COLLEGEVILLE (WJON News) -- A whirlwind trip hopes to yield results in the future for St. John's Prep. Assistant Admission Director Molly McAlister recently returned from a three-week trip to Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Japan to visit with potential new students and their parents.

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The trip was, in part, in conjunction with the Saudi Aramco Expatriate School's (SAES) annual fair which brings in over 90 boarding schools to meet with prospective students. McAlister says they typically do two to three big international recruiting trips a year and international recruiting has been going on at St. John's Prep for a long time:

"So this has been going on for a long time and we've had exchange programs for over 50 years now. We have the exchange programs as kind of a separate thing but then we also have the international students who we go out and recruit and they usually stay for all four years while they're at prep. They usually get a diploma from us."

Molly McAlister, St. John's Preparatory School
Molly McAlister, St. John's Preparatory School
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McAlister says once a student decides to come to St. John's Prep they will stay in St. Michael's dormitory which is connected to the campus by a tunnel and most people don't realize the school has a dorm:

"So we have a girls' and a boys' village where they live, a big community kitchen space where they can hang out, cook meals together. They can play games, they have a big fireplace in the dorm and foosball, pool, movie room, all of that, so they actually live here in the dormitory."

She says an additional advantage for international students is they have access to the College of St. Benedict and St. John's University while they are going to school.

Molly McAlister, St. John's Preparatory School
Molly McAlister, St. John's Preparatory School
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McAlister says they often won't know if a trip is successful at recruiting students for several years until a prospective student decides to come. St. John's Prep currently has 62 international students from 14 different countries.

Molly McAlister, St. John's Preparatory School
Molly McAlister, St. John's Preparatory School
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Molly McAlister, St. John's Preparatory School
Molly McAlister, St. John's Preparatory School
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