By Ashley Hocking
While many students fondly look back upon piling onto yellow school buses for class field trips to the local theater, museum, or zoo, others recall these class field trips as life changing experiences.
Caty Field, a 20-year-old sophomore at the University of Kansas, is one of these students. Field attended Topeka Collegiate School in Topeka, Kansas, where she was able to go on field trips to Hiefer Ranch in Arkansas and SeaCamp in Florida.
During the field trip to Arkansas in seventh grade, Field experienced firsthand some of the challenges of global poverty and hunger as well as learned how to be part of the solution.
“We lived like we were in a third world country,” Field said. “It was really eye opening.”
During the class trip to SeaCamp in Florida in eighth grade, Field learned about underwater exploration and did a number of water activities, such as diving, sailing and windsurfing.
“We did a sea camp where we learned about marine life,” Field said. “That was really cool. I got to experience things I wouldn’t normally be exposed to in a school setting.”
Megan Anderson, a classmate of Field’s from Topeka Collegiate School, believes the class trips to Arkansas and Florida taught the students valuable life lessons. Anderson is a sophomore at the University of Alabama and a close friend of Field’s.
“I definitely think we learned a lot about global poverty and how lucky we were to be where we were,” Anderson said. “On the second trip, we learned all kinds of stuff about the ocean, sustainability and stuff we didn’t really know about being from Kansas.”
Maddy Gallegos, a friend of Field’s from high school, often heard about the class trips Field took while she was in middle school. Gallegos is a sophomore at the University of Kansas.
“I didn’t even go to middle school with her, but I could tell you that she went there because she talks about it so much,” Gallegos said. “They’re just really cool experiences I wish I had. You don’t get to do things like that very often.”
When Field boarded a yellow school bus to embark on journeys to Arkansas and Florida, she didn’t anticipate how much the class trips would change her life.
“The bonds that we made through these trips still affect me today,” Field said. “I’m still really good friends with a lot of the people who went to school with me. I learned stuff at an earlier age that I wouldn’t have if I didn’t go on these trips.”