Students Travel to Belize for Annual Community Service Trip
by Elizabeth Muse on Thursday, March 10th, 2016
Community Service Trip:
From March 11th through March 19th, about fifteen students will be travelling to Belize for the annual service trip organized by the Community Service Board. These students will be flying to Belize and then traveling to the Ocean Academy on the island of Caye Caulker. On the island, the students will be working on school improvement projects and will be tutoring children. This work is done in conjunction with Peacework, an experienced nonprofit organization. Peacework’s goal is to “engage with communities, academic institutions, and corporations in order to find innovative solutions for sustainable development around the world,” explains its website. This is Milton’s eleventh year working with the organization. While Peacework coordinates the work done on the island, it is up to the students to raise the money leading up to the trip via t-shirt and raffle sales. Considering this trip requires involvement even before the students have stepped foot on a plane, it is no surprise that dedicated and driven students often take part. While the trip involves work before and during, no students regret the experiences; “I’m so glad I got the opportunity to go last year. We worked with kids, helped with construction, and even met fellow students our own age. The trip was a lot of work, but it was also a ton of fun,” says Cameron DiGiovanni (I), who participated in the trip two years ago.
Orchestra and Chamber Singers Trip:
With a total of 66 students participating, the Orchestra and Chamber Singers trip is by far the largest spring break trip. From March 11th through March 17th, this group of students will be travelling to Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic. There, the orchestra will perform a total of five concerts. One concert venue of significant importance will be the Lobkowicz Palace. The venue is owned by a Milton Academy alumnus who returned to the country in 2002 after the dissolution of the Communist government. In addition to the Milton connection, this venue is specifically important because it is where Beethoven first rehearsed his First Symphony; fittingly, the Milton Orchestra will play that very piece in the same venue almost two centuries later. Meanwhile, Chamber Singers will perform a total of five concerts throughout Prague. Although the Orchestra and Chamber Singers performances are usually held separately, this year’s will be slightly different. Six orchestra members will accompany the chamber singers for several of their songs, one of which Mr. Whalen wrote as part of his proposal to his wife. Both the Orchestra and the Chamber Singers members are immensely excited to perform in Prague. Jam Smith (I), a cello player, shares his enthusiasm: “appealing to musical and political historians alike, Prague is a fitting venue for Milton’s classical musicians. I’m delighted to be performing with such talented peers and grateful to the school for arranging the trip.” Similarly, Grace Stanfield (I), the head of the Chamber Singers, shares her hopes for the trip, saying, “I went on the Ireland trip two years ago and wasn’t sure what to expect, but it was such an amazing and beautiful trip. I don’t really know what to expect from Prague, but I know that it will be such an amazing and unique experience.”
Eight ambitious students will be embarking on the ODP Trip to Baja California, Mexico. They will leave March 12th and come back March 19th. They will be sea kayaking for the majority of the time from beach to beach. To maximize their time outdoors, they will even be camping on the beaches at night. The times not peddling through the water in kayaks will be spent hiking, snorkelling, and exploring the beaches and hills. This is the second ODP trip, the first trip took place two years ago in Joshua Tree National Park and Red Rock Canyon. Malcolm McCann (II) says, “I really enjoyed last years spring break trip. It was really something to look forward to. I’m so happy Milton offers such a cool trip each year, and I’m sure this year’s ODP trip will be incredible.”
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