ALTA - Will Dible, high school science teacher at Alta-Aurelia High School,wanted to take a group of his students to Japan to view historical and cultural sights. Last year, he offered the proposed trip to all Aurelia and Alta students who would be in high school in the 2011-12 school year, and eight students from Aurelia and one from Cherokee Washington High School signed up to join him on the journey.
The itinerary for the nine-day trip will include visiting the cities of Tokyo, Asakusa, Hakone, Nara, Osaka, Hiroshima and Kyoto, and will include viewing Shinto and Buddhist temples, seeing the after-effects of the bombing in WWII, and sampling the Japanese culture and cuisine.
Students who have signed up for the trip include Neal Felten, Kaleb Howey, Lacie Sleezer, Mariah Allen, Cory Ballantyne, Drake Thatcher, Hannah Engelke, Bryan Hernandez, and Markus West, who is from Cherokee. Dible and parent/chaperone Pam Allen will accompany the students on the trip.
Though the Alta-Aurelia School administration approved the trip, the district will not be providing any funds for it, which is why the student from Cherokee is being allowed to join the group.
A non-profit group - the AAHS Educational Travel Group - was formed last year, and the students were encouraged to have fundraisers to raise a share of their expenses for the trip. One such fundraiser was the sale of t-shirts which celebrate the history of Aurelia High School, listing many of the honors achieved through the years by AHS students.
Bound for the Land of the Rising Sun -
Alta-Aurelia student Mariah Allen (left) and her mom, Pam, will be touring Japan early this sumer. Photo contributed.
Dible is hoping that the Educational Travel Group can become an official school club next year.
The group will be flying out of Des Moines on Thursday, May 31, and return on Friday, June 8.