Two educational immersion trips this past summer offered RE students opportunities for serious study in their fields of interest. Six upper school students and two members of the Class of 2022 enjoyed a biodiversity field expedition in Nadi, Fiji, in June, and 16 students traveled to Salamanca, Spain, in July for a language and cultural enrichment opportunity.
The two trips marked the return of educational adventures, which had been paused at Ransom Everglades for two years because of the pandemic. Ransom Everglades academic leaders expect to offer many more such opportunities and explorations for RE students during both the school year and summer.
The upper school students who traveled to Fiji from June 10-28 conducted research alongside world-renowned scientists while enjoying the pristine reefs. They learned to identify corals and fish, and they conducted bird point count surveys, bug surveys, butterfly surveys and carbon surveys. They attended evening college-level lectures with working scientists, and spent time with local villagers, learning how to weave mats and make the traditional lovo feast.
They also had the opportunity to connect with university students from Singapore, the United Kingdom, Indonesia, Australia and other countries. Director of Environmental Sustainability Kelly Jackson led the trip along with science teacher Gus Palacios.
“The experience was transformative and inspiring with authentic and rich learning at every turn,” Palacios said. “Each of the students had an incredible journey and will have memories to reflect on for years to come: Interactions with nature, science, culture.”
The students who traveled to the medieval city of Salamanca were all members of RE’s middle school in 2021-22. They stayed with host families, took four hours of Spanish classes each weekday at the Tia Tula school, and enjoyed myriad cultural activities. They took walking tours, a flamenco class and a cooking class; they made different types of paella, crema catalana and nonalcholic sangria. They took boat tours, visited museums and a chorizo-making home, and enjoyed many group activities during the July 17-26 trip. They traveled with former RE faculty members Lilliam Fernandez and Leonardo Arango.
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.