Students and Staff Embark on Trip to NYC

Students and Staff Embark on Trip to NYC

Julia Roeschenthaler, Staff Writer

On January 30th, 2019, students in German Club, French Club, and the International Studies class departed for New York City. Temperatures ranged between sixteen and negative five degrees, but determined students and staff members boarded the bus with the hopes of embarking on what was sure to be an excellent trip. Activities included touring the United Nations building, visiting the New York Historical Society, touring Ellis Island and NBC Studios, and so much more.

During the trip, students and staff partook in a variety of international activities, including spending time in areas like Chinatown and Little Italy. Students were able to walk through the various neighborhoods within said areas, and purchase meals, souvenirs, and more.

One student expressed her delight at being able to experience such unique, international activities: “I loved being immersed in so many different cultures. I would turn around and hear someone speaking a different language, and it was so cool!” Students were constantly being exposed to new customs within the city, whether that included munching on tarte flambée on East 33rd Street, or meeting with UN representatives to discuss women’s issues around the world.

Both students and staff had the opportunity to tour the UN in addition to meeting with representatives. In the UN, students were able to gain a more in-depth understanding of the goals of the UN, and the various issues that the UN addresses around the world. Students were even able to view parts of the UN not typically introduced to the public, and therefore further appreciate the true nature of the United Nations. Later on during the trip, the group visited the 9/11 memorial. Bethany Chase, one of the staff members in charge of organizing and executing the trip, was moved by the students’ reactions to the various activities, including the visit to the 9/11 memorial: “I felt inspired. It was inspiring to see students engage with representatives from the UN, to immerse themselves in the 9/11 museum.” She was further amazed by the empathy that the students expressed towards the victims of 9/11, and how reflective they were during the whole experience.

Students were able to further reflect upon both neighboring cultures and their own upon visiting Ellis Island. While the windchill was often below zero, students and staff boarded the ferry to Ellis Island with great excitement at the possibility of engaging in such an interesting experience. The group toured the Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration, and actually took a short test within the museum to discover facts about the nature of their family’s history, and their immigration to the United States. Students were able to learn a great deal about the immigration process as well, which directly related to topics that a number of students were pursuing in their Social Studies courses at the time of the trip.

On February 2nd, students and staff returned late in the evening to the Upper St. Clair High School. While the trip had been extremely cold, everyone was pleased with the outcome. Reflecting on the trip, Bethany Chase states: “It is so exciting to see how we can go to New York City, and experience so many different parts of the world.” While students were only in New York for about three days, the experience they partook in is one that will last a lifetime.