Students of DPS Amritsar went on an international school trip to USA in July, covering the enticing cities of Orlando, Washington and New York.
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The city tour in Washington, including the National Air and Space Museum of the Smithsonian Institution (NASM), a museum which has the world’s largest stockpile of historic aircrafts and spacecrafts. The Washington Monument, which was built to immortalise the first President of the US and commander in chief of the Continental Army, George Washington, is built across the Lincoln Memorial which was built to commemorate the 16th President of the US. The students paid a visit to both the cenotaphs. Next on the list was the National WWII Museum which exhibits US experience during the 20th century, It maintains an affiliation with the Smithsonian Institution. The city tour ended with a photo-stop outside the White House.
The Statue of Liberty, Wall Street, 5th Avenue, and Financial District were discovered and explored by the curious young travellers. New York being termed and proven as the most economically powerful city leaves its visitors in awe of its hustle-bustle. The evening spent at Times Square which is often called ‘The Crossroads of the World’ left the students baffled. The group got some retail therapy at The Mills at Jersey Gardens. And then they stepped into the world of astronauts — The John F. Kennedy Space Centre (KSC) , one of the ten NASA field centres, located in Orlando. Kennedy Space Center has been NASA’s primary launch center of human spaceflight. The students got to meet and interact with an astronaut and have a complete tour of the facility. The ‘Mission Zones’ which include everything from the dawn of the space exploration to the ongoing missions, were explored by the group. These include four zones — ‘Heroes & Legends’ celebrates the pioneers of NASA’s earliest programs, ‘Behind the Gates’ allows an access to the primitive launch sites and the science of spaceflight facilities, ‘Race to the Moon’ lets visitors witness Saturn V moon rocket’s magnitude, ‘Shuttle: A Ship Like No Other’ gives a litoff experience at the Shuttle Launch Experience and is the permanent home of the genuine space shuttle Atlantis, and lastly the zone of ‘Nasa Now & Next’ offers a chance to know about the future missions of NASA.
The final three days were all about blurring the lines between reality and imagination. They visited Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure and SEA LIFE Aquarium. The trip culminated in a visit to Madame Tussauds, which exhibits waxworks of celebrated personalities across the world.
Arduous a task as it might feel to travel but once your journey begins, you realise it is nothing but a journey of purification of the mind and the soul. It is a process of unburdening oneself. There is just no denying that travel is essential to opening the mind. As the students met different people, had new experiences and visited foreign places, the reality of the same shattered their preconceived notions. Now, they see people with the same eye and do not stereotype them on the basis of geography. The challenges, the kindness of strangers, and the beauty in diversity of the natural world only makes one more open and accepting of different ways of thinking and being.
The trip was organized and facilitated by EdQuest Travels Pvt. Ltd. EdQuest offers global learning opportunities in the form of international educational tours for schools, international conferences, short-term and long-term cultural exchange programs and summer schools for students with an aim of revitalizing classroom education using travel as a medium. Discover more programs at www.edquest.tours