Tag Archives: student trip

Mid-West College Tour Part 1

By 10th or 11th grade, students preparing for college need to be thinking about what school they will attend.  But it’s difficult to get a good read on a college by looking at a website or a brochure.  For this reason, I have designed college tours divided into geographic sections of the United States. Taking this type of tour allows college prep students to experience the university in person. The student group sees the campus and has the opportunity to speak to students, faculty and staff.

This type of interaction is valuable. It effectively inspires students to make a decision about their college of choice.

Following, I will offer an example of a Mid West College Tour (part 1) where students have the opportunity to visit some of the most distinguished universities in this area of the United States.  This is by no means a comprehensive list of Mid West colleges. I encourage teachers taking students on this type of tour to add or delete colleges they really wish to visit.  In fact, there are so many great schools in the Mid West, there will be a part 2 to this article.

University of Cincinnati

Serving over 40,000 students and delivering 308 programs of study, University of Cincinnati is a well-respected urban university.  Forbes magazine ranked it among the most beautiful campuses in the United States.  The campus is a showcase for contemporary architecture.  Known for its accredited Musical Theater Program and its Architecture, Construction & Building Trades Program, UC has a great deal to offer the imaginative student.  UC has a 15/1 student-faculty teaching ratio and over 250 Graduate Programs to choose from.

Xavier University

Also located in Cincinnati, Ohio, Xavier University enrolls approximately 6,700 students each year.  There is a College of Arts and Sciences, Social Sciences, Health & Education, and the Williams College of Business, so students studying in these areas will be most interested in Xavier.  The Musketeers Men’s basketball team, women’s soccer and basketball teams, and other athletic and co-curricular activities make Xavier an exciting campus.

Ohio State University

With an enrollment of nearly 65,000 students, 1,700 acres of land and 457 buildings, Ohio State University has a huge impact on Columbus, Ohio.  Cited among the top 20 national public universities by U.S. News and World Report in 2010, Ohio State University is a top-rated school.  Academic programs range from Medicine to Engineering, Architecture, Arts and Sciences and more. The campus is a mixture of Gothic revival architecture and contemporary building designs, with a 60-acre arboretum and abundant gardens and plazas.

Indiana University

Indiana University (IU) has eight campuses across the state. The main campus is in Bloomington and is scheduled as a stop for this tour.  Indiana University was founded in 1820 and has a rich heritage. The campus retains its historical beginnings in its layout and architecture with Indiana limestone buildings dating to the late 19th Century. Bloomington is a town of about 70,000 people. The inhabitants of Bloomington and the campus community refer to it as “B-town” because of its lively music scene, coffeehouses, farmers markets, international cuisine, and festivals.  IU is known academically for its business, arts, law, technology and journalism programs to name just a few highlights.  With over 32,000 students and a diverse student body, Indiana University is a premiere institution.

Purdue University

Ranked among U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges, Purdue is an outstanding University. The main campus is located in West Lafayette Indiana, and is the scheduled destination for this tour. There are also Purdue locations in Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, Westville and Hammond.  Ranked #1 in Biological and Agricultural Programs, and in the top 10 for Undergraduate Business and Engineering students, Purdue has distinguished programs to offer the student of Science, Technology Engineering and Math.  Purdue is also well known in many areas of research in these fields.  With over 30,000 undergraduate students enrolled and a competitive selection process, Purdue University is certainly a school worth serious consideration.

University of Illinois

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign is a school that has educated numerous Pulitzer Prize and Nobel winners.  Undergraduate enrollment is over 31,000 students, and there are 17 different colleges and Instructional units to choose from. University of Illinois was established in 1867 and retains a 19th Century flavor in some of its architecture.   Known for the liberal arts and sciences, University of Illinois has a distinguished list of alumnus – scientists and writers recognized for excellence in their field.  The campus tour includes visits to a number of buildings that date to the 19th and early 20th Centuries.

Take student groups on a college tour of selected schools in the Mid West to help them gain a realistic perspective of college life.  In addition to visiting schools, entertainment and dining are part of the itinerary. Students can spend time exploring towns such as Bloomington, West Lafayette and Cincinnati to get a feel for lifestyles, cuisine, geography, climate and more.

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Take Student Travel Groups on a Science Trip to Washington D.C.

Student travel group leaders and teachers often take school groups to Washington D.C. on history and government tours. Our nation’s capitol has a rich history, and the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government are centrally located there. This makes the trip to Washington D.C. perfect for the study of history and government.

Yet Washington D.C. is also an ideal location for student trips which focus on science based learning. There are numerous points of interest in the Washington D.C. area that complement the study of science including: Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian American & Natural History Museum, NASA Goddard Visitor’s Center, Maryland Science Center, Baltimore National Aquarium, Marian Koshland Science Museum, and the National Zoo. In addition to scheduling visits to these locations on the itinerary, student tour groups can also allow time to visit the U.S. Capitol/Supreme Court, take an illuminated tour of Memorials and Monuments, and see the U.S.S. Barry — all in a three or four day tour.

This article will provide a brief overview of major points of interest for a science tour of Washington D.C.

Smithsonian Air and Space Museum & Smithsonian American Natural History Museum
These two museums are a great starting point for an educational science trip.
U.S. explorations of space and innovations in flight are well-documented and preserved in the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum. Students can participate in guided tours, or educational programs that are appropriate for specific grade levels. A visit to the Air and Space Museum will provide interactive learning about airplanes, outer space explorations and pivotal moments in U.S. history when American scientists and programs led the world in discoveries in flight and space missions.

The American Natural History Museum provides guided and self-guided tours and educational programs related to the history of the earth: fossils, stones, animals, pre-historic wildlife and remains, oceanic environments, and more. Student tour groups can visit permanent or special exhibits related to their curricular studies and teachers can focus the visit on exhibits which complement actual classroom learning experiences in the natural sciences. A visit to these two Smithsonian Museums provides an excellent opportunity for learning about science.

NASA Goddard Visitor’s Center
At the NASA Goddard Visitor’s Center, student tour groups gain a deeper level of insight into contemporary space exploration. The group can view photographs taken from the Hubble Space Telescope with pictures of planets, galaxies, black holes and views of earth taken from outer space. Students may view movies of earth and outer space in the Science on a Sphere projection room, where film is projected onto a spherical screen. Student groups will also learn about information gathered from satellites and other vehicles designed to explore deep space, through photographs of phenomenon on earth, the sun, and planets. Student education is enhanced through the lens of high tech devices, utilized by the NASA scientists to further our knowledge about the universe.

Maryland Science Center & Baltimore National Aquarium
Located in Baltimore, MD, just an hour outside of Washington D.C., are two premiere attractions for the science student: Maryland Science Center and the Baltimore National Aquarium. The Maryland Science Center has a rooftop observatory as well as nightly Sky and Stars SkiCasts to help the astronomy student interpret the activities of stars, planets, and other celestial bodies and occurrences. Students can watch live chemical and scientific experiments on the Demo stage, see science films projected onto a sphere, or ride on Segways when they tour the Maryland Science Center.

At the Baltimore National Aquarium, students will be especially pleased by the new exhibit, “A Dolphin’s World” an extraordinary Dolphin Show that teaches students about the ocean planet, and the way human behavior in and near the Chesapeake Bay watershed affects the dolphins’ environment on a daily basis. The Baltimore National Aquarium also has a 4-D Immersion Theater with daily shows as well as 16,500 animals on exhibit. It’s no wonder the Baltimore National Aquarium is internationally known and recognized as one of the finest aquariums in the United States. The opportunity to visit the Baltimore National Aquarium will complement any classroom studies on oceanography and life beneath the sea.

Marian Koshland Science Museum
The National Academy of Sciences Marian Koshland Science Museum in Washington D.C. features interactive exhibits that teach visitors about the immediate impact science has on our daily lives. Here students will learn about the importance of safe drinking water, infectious diseases, DNA, and some of the wonders of science. The exhibits are ongoing and will change from time to time. Teachers are advised to check the Museum website to coordinate curricular plans with current exhibits.

National Zoo
The National Zoo is a spectacular showcase for animals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians from a variety of eco-systems around the world. There are numerous exhibits, many with a geographical focus such as on North America, Asia, the Amazon and Africa; exhibits that concentrate on species are: Great Cats, Giant Pandas, Birds, and Asian Elephants. Teachers can access the National Zoo website well in advance of the trip to develop lesson plans that are in sync with the visit. The curriculum guides are grade specific and available for free download, with core materials included for classroom learning, making it easy for teachers to prepare students for the trip to the National Zoo.

Teachers looking to organize a science trip will find a wealth of opportunity for quality educational experiences in Washington D.C. and Baltimore. Some of the finest science museums in the world are located in the capitol city. For more information about a science based student trip and itinerary email info@educationaltravelconsultants.com for details on scheduling or pricing. Or, Request a Quote, by taking a few minutes to fill out this brief, online questionnaire.