Sydney Johnson, a Chicago native and graduated senior from Hampshire High School, is the inaugural winner of GLA’s STA Flight Voucher Contest.
If you’ve ever wanted to travel to Europe then GLA’s travel programs are for you.
These experiences can be thought of as summer college programs for high school students, as they’re great for students getting ready to attend college for the first time in the fall or the year after. Just think about setting foot in an unfamiliar place, starting a new journey, and best of all being able to share the experience with others who you meet for the first time in college that few others your age will have had.
To the UK
1. England, Scotland, Wales, and…
If you decide to go to the UK you’ll be able to see lots of destinations crossed off your bucket list! Not only are you going to visit these places, but you’ll also be exposed to the country’s art and culture — Big Ben, Parliament, and the Tower Bridge are just a few places you’ll stop. These places are incredible to see and even better for a selfie or picture to be taken and posted to Instagram!
2. Coasteering, like cliff jumping?
Of course, while you’re sight seeing, there are fun activities planned too. You’ll be coasteering – yes this is a real thing – and so much more. Imagine learning how to fish first hand from a local fisherman too!
3. Help do your part.
While this all sounds like a lot of fun, you’ll also be helping out the local community and making a difference. You’ll be volunteering to help youth who are at risk and learning how London is working to solve issues like food waste and homelessness. By the time you’re done here, you’ll practically have seen the world and know how to make a difference in it.
1. Water so clear you won’t see what hits you (except you can)
When in Spain you’ll be able to watch Barcelona’s flamenco dancers and maybe learn a few moves of your own. Then there’s the Mediterranean beach where you can get your tan on or kayak in and see wildlife through the clear waters. But if action is calling your name then bullfighting is for you – or at least touring the stadium.
2. Foodie, artist, linguistic, or…
There are so many opportunities to dive into the Spanish culture. If you’re a foodie then taking a cooking class and learning how to make authentic food is just for you. But if you’re more into art, then walk the streets and see architecture from famous people like Picasso or Gaudi. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to try and learn a new language. Well classes are offered and you can try out your skills at a local marketplace.
3. Leave your mark
Sometimes the best way to make an impact is by listening. In Spain, you’ll focus on service projects helping those in need. Think of making lasting relationship and hearing people’s stories of where they come from and how it all happened.
So what pre-college program will you choose to travel to? The world is yours, so why not see it and make lasting memories in it!
Contributed by Samantha Watkins
This article appeared in the school newspaper for Autumn, a GLA Alumnus
Have you ever wanted to travel outside of the country, but found your parents wouldn’t let you go alone? Well, what if you had the opportunity to travel with a group of teens for 8 to 21 days without your parents: would you take it?
This past summer, I had the opportunity to travel to the Dominican Republic for 10 days through an organization called Global Leadership Adventures (GLA). GLA is a service-learning abroad program where students will learn the local culture, history, and language of their destination, serve in the surrounding communities, and explore all that the country has to offer. Potential destinations include Tanzania, Thailand, Fiji, Costa Rica, Guatemala, the Galapagos Islands, Peru, and many more.
One of the greatest aspects of GLA is that within each trip, there is a specific focus. For example, if you love children, you can go on a trip that is centered on the children in their communities, teaching them to read and write English. If you love sports, you can spend all day with the boys and girls playing new games and teaching them some American games. If you love working with your hands like I do, you can go to the Dominican Republic and build schools out of plastic bottles and chicken wire, mix your own cement from the sand beneath your feet, and personally connect with the community.
You will work many hours of service depending on the duration of your trip, but each trip includes some amazing adventures. The Dominican Republic home base, for example, is right on the beach, and it’s great to cool off in the water after a long day of volunteer work. I spent a day snorkeling, shopping at the local stores, and relaxing on the beach. Another day, I went ziplining and cliff jumping from 50 feet up into a lagoon.
Parents need not worry about supervision; there are mentors and supervisors on every trip, and I felt extremely safe everywhere I went. Parents will also appreciate the other great aspect of these trips: affordability. GLA offers need-based scholarships, a guide to fundraising your trip (which is what I did), or payment plans you can work out with your trip advisor. I chose the Dominican Republic because I felt that it would be an eye-opening experience, and that was exactly what it was; I realized I am fortunate to live here in our small rural community. Everyone should travel outside of the country at least once in his or her life, so why not go to a place you never expected to go, have the time of your life, and give back all at once?
Contributed by Autumn E.
Last year, the Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies [Read more…]
Photo taken from one of our day to trips to the hot springs! We were gladly hiking to the waterfall and 120 degree hot springs!
Photo taken mid-Spanish class that we had class in the Quezaltenango city. We were practicing our Spanish by asking the locals questions about Guatemala 🙂
A photo capturing the excitement of recess at the school where we were doing our work in Quezaltenango.
In this photo we are learning the art of making traditional Guatemalan tortillas, a very tasty snack!
All smiles while touring Xela, Guatemala in our GLA group! Missing so many great people.
Contributed by Beate Kaz