From Ipswich To Peru

Carly Restuccia and Taylor Hanibal

From Costa Rica, to London, France and Amsterdam, and now to Peru, students of Ipswich High School have traveled all around the world within the last few years and are making an impact. From band concerts, to learning about new cultures, and becoming global citizens, there are many different ways students have shown what they can provide to the globe. Two years ago, students competed to win free trips to Costa Rica. Three years ago, the chorus, band, and orchestra students traveled to England to perform three concerts for an amazing crowd of people. Last June, students were asked to create projects and compete in order to get selected for a trip to Europe. That project and trip was based around the Student Leadership class, a class that teaches students to be leaders and make big impacts in their community and beyond.

This year, the same trip went to Peru, and students had to complete a project just like past trips. “My project was on law enforcement and the mentally ill. Families of the mentally ill are poorly equipped to help in crises. The police don’t typically act the best in situations with the mentally ill, and they use force and are not trained to help in these situations. As a result of this, mentally ill people are often killed or injured,” explained junior, Eva Trainer, who was selected to go on the trip. Also, like last year, students attended a Global Citizenship Summit, which this year was held in Lima, Peru. In regards to preparation, Eva said that she will be, “packing, and we had to make a video of our peers and friends and family and ask about being a global citizen and what it means to them. We have also been selling lollipops to raise money.” The trip leaves for Peru on March 12th, just two days after Eva gets home from the Close Up trip in Washington, D.C.. Although there are only ten students going on this specific trip, the group hopes to make a larger impact on the school and the community, using what they learn in Peru. “We are planning to make a global citizen class when we get back, and hopefully other students will join,” said Eva.

We spoke to Mrs. LaFrance about her excursion to Costa Rica two years ago. The trip she lead was similar to the current trip in Peru. Mr. Dalton asked her if she wanted to lead the trip and she was delighted to have the opportunity offered to her. Many students submitted essays and she said, “Mr. Dalton and I brainstormed it [the essay question] together.” This trip focused around fixing the environment. She took twelve, deserving students to Costa Rica with Education First Tours, which is the same travel company used by the people on the Peru trip. The trip to Costa Rica had a great impact for years to come. Mrs. LaFrance said, “The student projects that came out of the trip had a positive influence on the school as whole and the community.” These group trips around the world have given countless opportunities to students. The trips are a way to immerse students in different cultures and bring them together with other students to work together on a global scale.

These trips offered by our school have really made an impact on students, educators, and the major community. Different classes with a new style of teaching and learning have emerged from these opportunities. The sustainability class taught by Mrs. LaFrance was created after the trip to Costa Rica. The class created a huge impact on the community, with projects that included the banning of styrofoam in Ipswich restaurants, the banning of the plastic bag in Ipswich stores, and saving the Ipswich River. The students going on the trip to Peru look to make a similar impact when they come home, and hopefully it will stretch beyond our community as well.