Across the Pond By kate Lewis

Staples students are no strangers to travel, with programs like Builders Beyond Borders, Teen Tours and independent travel. Oftentimes, major travel and vacation hot spots are Europe, the Caribbean and South America, but recently, Asia has put herself on the map for Staples teens.

Photo by Charlie Colasurdo

More and more students are venturing out across the Pacific Ocean into places like Korea, China, Qatar and India. There, students are able to immerse themselves into unique and different cultures.

Photo by Charlie Colasurdo

Arin Garland ’18, has been to China, Vietnam, Cambodia, and goes to South Korea every two years. In South Korea, Garland has visited Ilsan and Seoul. Ilsan is a district in the city of Goyang, and Seoul is the bustling capital. As a fairly frequent visitor, Garland says, “My favorite part of visiting Korea was seeing family, but also seeing how different it is from America every time I go.”

Photo by Charlie Colasurdo

Joe Xiang ’19, has travelled to China, where he was born and could visit extended family. Like Garland, Xiang also commented on how different the United States is from where he visited. “It had a lot of stuff different from the U.S.,” said Xiang. And his favorite part of the trip? “I really enjoyed Chinatown.”

Photo by Charlie Colasurdo

Nicole Arellano ’18, lived in Qatar for three years. Qatar is a peninsular country that borders Saudi Arabia. According to Arellano, Qatar was full of diversity, especially compared to that of Westport, and recreational activities were also quite different. “I think my favorite thing was going out to the sand dunes and riding them on motorcycles and riding camels,” said Arellano. Arellano has also been to New Delhi, the bustling capital of India. “New Delhi is a really fast-paced city with lots of different hotels and restaurants. I did go to the Taj Mahal, which was truly beautiful,” said Arellano.

Photo by Charlie Colasurdo

This summer, one of the Mandarin teachers at Staples, Mr. Fray, will be taking about 20 Mandarin students to China for three weeks. Eden Schumer ’18 is one of those students. “It’s going to be an eye-opening experience to explore a country so different and far away from ours. I have been to China once before. It’s a beautiful country rich with culture,” said Schumer.

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