The Class of 2023 traveled to the Everglades in two waves in January, keeping alive a 30-plus-year-old tradition and surviving what is an annual rite of passage for freshmen at Ransom Everglades. The first group of freshmen traveled through the Ten Thousand Islands on Jan. 13-17 and enjoyed balmy, sunny South Florida weather. The second wave (Jan. 21-25) was met with unseasonably cold weather and high winds upon arrival, but pleasant conditions thereafter.
The students left their smart phones at base camp and traveled by canoe, navigating with compasses and maps. They slept in tents on beaches or boarded up, placing boards across their canoes to create mini platforms on the water. They cooked their own meals, paddled their way through mangrove tunnels, and tried to avoid spiders and mosquitos.
The trips were executed in partnership with the North Carolina-based Outward Bound. Karen Thompson, Dean of the Freshman Class, helped organize the venture, and physical education teacher Penny Matthews ensured that students were prepared through the bay studies curriculum that is the core of freshman year physical education.
Founded in 1903, Ransom Everglades School is a coeducational, college preparatory day school for grades 6 - 12 located on two campuses in Coconut Grove, Florida. Ransom Everglades School produces graduates who "believe that they are in the world not so much for what they can get out of it as for what they can put into it." The school provides rigorous college preparation that promotes the student's sense of identity, community, personal integrity and values for a productive and satisfying life, and prepares the student to lead and to contribute to society.