Travel Opportunities for Upper School Students
Upper School students have two unique opportunities for travel every year: Travel Abroad and Mission Trip.
February break offers Academy students the opportunity for a foreign travel adventure. These trips are run through a private agency, with an Academy teacher serving as liaison to that agency. Before the trip students get to know each other better, and learn about the destination’s language, culture and politics, in addition to the basics: packing tips, foreign money, and how to navigate safely in the new environment. Students (with parental input) select the destination during the previous April - so everyone can plan accordingly. The trips always focus on exploration and education through meaningful and fun activities.
Past trips include:
- Costa Rica
- Ireland and England
- France and Spain
- Portugal and Spain
- Greece and Italy
Watch for announcements early in the school year if you want to participate. All are welcome!
April break presents another opportunity for travel, this time to fulfill part of our mission to provide community service. Each year the Mission and Ministry Office organizes a mission trip for service work. In 2016, 18 students dedicated their school break week to travel to Jamaica. The students spent their first four days volunteering at the Mount Olivet Primary School in the rural farming community of Mandeville. Mount Olivet is a six-classroom primary school that educates 126 children from the age of six through 13. The school’s children either have no family or come from single-parent households. Academy students assisted the Mount Olivet teachers in the classroom working to improve the children’s numeracy and literacy skills. They also helped to design and paint a mural on the outside of the school building.
“We were all transformed by the relationships we built with the children at the school, with the JVE staff, and with each other,” stated Mrs. Griffin.
Day five of the trip found the group hard at work farming with the locals of Mandeville and learning how to cook like a Jamaican.
The last leg of the trip was all about cultural immersion. The students traveled to Montego Bay where they toured the Rastafari Indigenous Village and learned about Rastafarian life, history, and traditions. They also attended a service at the Mount Olivet United Church where they joined in fellowship and worship with local community members.
“We had an amazing time in Jamaica! The country was beautiful, the food was delicious, and the people were so friendly! It was truly a life-changing week,” said Mrs. Griffin.