By the second week, we are getting used to life in France, what a thing to say! The town of Aix is starting to become more and more familiar by the day. Everyone in our group is finding cafes and restaurants that they like and are trying to become regulars at.
Proctor's winter Mountain Classroom group continues their journey westward, spending the past week in West Texas and visiting Annunciation House. Proctor's relationship with Annunciation House dates back over a decade as students meet with and hear the stories of immigrants seeking asylum in the United States. In this week's blog post, Lulu '19 and Sean '20 share remarkable insights into their experience at the border, offering each of us a human window into what has become a largely dehumanized struggle in our Nation.
Proctor's five off-campus programs immerse students in cultures and communities around the globe. The only off-campus program for sophomores, Proctor in Costa Rica partners with the Cloud Forest School in Monteverde to provide a unique immersion learning experience for our students where each student is able to seamlessly continue with his or her tenth grade curriculum. As a monster snow-storming bears down on New England this weekend, our crew of five students are happily enjoying warm weather and even warmer hospitality from their host families in Costa Rica.
It is a new year which entails a whopping birth to a fantastic new European Art Classroom! Although there were some scares with baggage at the airport, we eventually arrived safe and sound to our new home for the winter trimester. Adjusting to a new country with a new language seemed intimidating at first, but as we continue to take French classes, we slowly are becoming more comfortable exploring nearby towns on our own.
Proctor Academy's Mountain Classroom winter 2019 reunited in Texas after the winter holiday break. Kicking off the New Year, this intrepid group of ten students and two faculty instructors set out on a six-day river trip on the Rio Grand through Big Bend National Park. Read Charlotte's '19 account of their adventure below.
In Spain, France, Costa Rica, and on Mountain Classroom, the Winter Term rolls forward and those on campus all feel slightly left behind. What’s happening over there? Those lucky sophomores in the Cloud Forest of Monteverde, the artists who have landed in Aix, the Mountain Classroom students just coming off the river El Paso. They are out there, out doing. On campus the temperatures will drop to near zero this weekend. It is closing in on Jack London To Build A Fire cold. Those who feel the distant pulse of the off campus programs with the greatest poignancy are likely those who were off campus in the fall. They have left pitching decks and strolls across the plaza in Segovia for the icy, huddled, hunching runs across campus. That bond they felt, those adventures they were living, where did they go?
Proctor's Winter 2019 Mountain Classroom group survived their first two weeks on the road, including a canoeing adventure through the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. Sleeping on rafts in the middle of the swamp, out-paddling alligators, learning to cook meals and to trust each other were just a few of the challenges. Jane '20 shares the group's first reflection below.
Proximate learning does not occur without risk, but it is in those moments where students are living their education alongside the issues they are studying that world views are transformed. Tomorrow at noon, more than a third of Proctor's student body will submit applications to study abroad on one of our five term-long off-campus programs next year. Many will apply to study off-campus for the first time, while others will look to cap their Proctor experience with a second or third trimester abroad. So why is it that more than 80% of our students choose to study off-campus?