Congratulations Nacel Open Door Star, Chad Meitner!

St. John Vianney Seminary Denver


Nacel Open Door (NOD) is excited to introduce one of our amazing partner school principals, host parent, and NOD Star, Chad Meitner of Hays, Kansas! Chad and Thomas More Prep Marian High School have been long-standing partners of NOD, working with both our Private School and Short-Term Programs. His support for students and passion for international exchange expanded this year into his own family hosting an Argentinian student, Andrea, in January for a five-week stay. We’re grateful to Chad for sharing more information about his experiences hosting international students in both his school and at home. 

Please share your experience of hosting NOD students at Thomas More Prep. 
From the perspective of the principal, it was fun. It's fun to bring in new students in January to give the current students some new people to interact with. We are a small school so even a group as small as ten new students makes a big impact. As a host parent, I enjoyed getting to converse with one student specifically, learning more about her family, her goals, and personality.

How do international students impact your students and the larger community? 
Our current students love getting to meet the new students from Argentina. They get to practice their Spanish and learn about the NOD students' favorite things. It opens the minds of our younger students who may have never even travelled outside of their own state.

What do you enjoy most about working with international students? Andrea in front of Hays mural
I love their vibrancy to live life. They are on a special trip and everything that I take for granted and see as mundane they see as something beautiful, interesting, or unique. It brings a new appreciation!

Please share your family's recent experience hosting a student.
We were unsure about hosting because our daughter was back from college for a week during the proposed stay. We have four younger boys in addition to my daughter with only four rooms. But we took the leap and reorganized sleeping arrangements for a week. We really enjoyed getting to know Andrea, who reminded me a lot of my college-aged daughter. Andrea went with us on some simple local adventures that we would consider every day, but that for her were unique opportunities. We took her to Wichita, Lake Wilson, my hometown of Hoisington, and to Denver to work in a homeless shelter for a weekend. She went to school dances and basketball games. It was something that my wife really enjoyed too because it was good to have another girl in the house. My wife helped Andrea get dresses, some new, and some at the local thrift store. They enjoyed shopping together. Overall, it was a great experience that we will always remember.

Celebrating Andrea's birthdayWhat would you tell someone who was considering hosting an international student? 
Just make it happen. If you wait for the "perfect" time, you'll never do it. You'll miss out on another interesting element in God's great big world if you don't take the leap and say "Yes."

Thank you, Chad, for being a NOD star and standout U.S. Ambassador!

Nacel Open Door is grateful to Chad and all of our partners and host families who welcome our students into their homes and make our international student exchanges work so well! To learn more about bringing students into your school, or being a Host Family or Local Representative, visit