“National Geographic has opened my eyes to not only a new world, but also a new way in which to see it… Photography has become more than a mere hobby for me. It has become a part of who I am.”
—Robert Leung, Tuscany field workshop student
WASHINGTON (Dec. 13, 2011)—National Geographic Student Expeditions has expanded its lineup of unique student travel programs for summer 2012. The new trips include community service programs in Tanzania, Peru and Cambodia; field workshops in Sicily, Buenos Aires and the Grand Canyon; and an intensive photography workshop in London led by a National Geographic photographer and a team of top-notch instructors.
National Geographic Student Expeditions offers immersive travel experiences for high school students, combining education and adventure in some of the world’s most fascinating places. Under the guidance of dynamic trip leaders and National Geographic experts, students discover new landscapes and cultures through “On Assignment” projects that allow them to focus on specific interests such as photography, conservation, filmmaking and archaeology. Throughout the trip, students break into teams to pursue their projects, which can range from a short story to a photography portfolio to a documentary film or a wildlife study.
Each program is designed to foster a sense of camaraderie, and many students attest to how much they grow during their journeys. As a student from the 2011 summer program noted: “On this trip, I learned that, with perseverance, optimism and hard work, I can accomplish nearly anything.”
There are three types of student programs: expeditions, field workshops and community service trips. Expeditions range from two to three weeks and emphasize in-depth exploration of the sights, landscapes and cultures of each destination. During the 11- to 12-day field workshops, students set roots in one or two compelling home bases as they explore the surrounding area on active excursions. During the 14- to 15-day community service programs, students settle into a local community and take part in everyday life, spending an estimated 30-40 hours working on service projects.
On expeditions and field workshops, a National Geographic expert — photographer, writer, researcher or explorer — joins the group for a portion of the trip. In Peru, for example, students encounter Inca ruins alongside writer and archaeologist Peter Frost. During the new London workshop, National Geographic photographer Amy Toensing will help students develop their photographic technique and individual approach to visual storytelling.
Deb Harris, National Geographic’s director of student travel and photography, said, “It’s a thrill to watch our student travelers connect with National Geographic and with the spirit of exploration that we instill in all of our trips. The reports that students send back about their experiences talk of life-changing moments, discovery of new passions and a palpable sense of worldliness and empowerment. We’re extremely excited about the opportunities our new lineup of 2012 trips will offer.”
In addition, National Geographic Student Expeditions offers a scholarship program for high school students seeking educational summer experiences who could not otherwise afford them. The program creates opportunities for students from diverse backgrounds and enhances the group dynamic and learning opportunities for all students. Abbey Taylor, a 2011 scholarship recipient, said of the experience, “My greatest success was stepping out of my comfort zone. I am a different person because of this trip. I feel so much more confident, trusting and goal-oriented after going to Alaska. I find myself being more strong-hearted, compassionate and well-rounded.”
For more information or to receive a copy of the 2012 National Geographic Student Expeditions catalog, call (877) 877-8759 or visit www.ngstudentexpeditions.com.
National Geographic Student Expeditions is a part of National Geographic Expeditions, the travel program of the National Geographic Society. Offering trips to more than 60 destinations across seven continents, National Geographic Expeditions features land programs, family programs, small-ship expeditions in conjunction with Lindblad Expeditions, and photography workshops and expeditions. The trips are accompanied by National Geographic experts whose insider perspectives enrich each travel experience. All proceeds support the Society’s aim of increasing global understanding through exploration, geography, education and research. For more information on National Geographic’s travel programs, visit www.nationalgeographicexpeditions.com.
The National Geographic Society is one of the world’s largest nonprofit scientific and educational organizations. Founded in 1888 to “increase and diffuse geographic knowledge,” the Society works to inspire people to care about the planet. It reaches more than 400 million people worldwide each month through its official journal, National Geographic, and its other magazines; National Geographic Channel; television documentaries; music; radio; films; books; DVDs; maps; exhibitions; live events; school publishing programs; interactive media; and merchandise. National Geographic has funded more than 10,000 scientific research, conservation and exploration projects and supports an education program promoting geographic literacy. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.com.