Picture the Hawaiian Islands. What do you see? For Jay Franey, also known as Nature Jay, the Hawaiian Islands are so much more than a great vacation spot. They provide a rich, ecological landscape that many can explore and learn from. Jay saw an opportunity to not only preserve the fragile ecosystem, but also teach and inspire future generations to give back. From this, ECO-Maui was founded.
Interested in learning more about our Pre-College programs? Check out our 2015 Pre-College Enrichment Highlight Video here.
Costa Rica is an eco-tourist’s dream, and while the sunshine, natural beauty and friendly faces are abundant, a large portion of the population lives in poverty. Many Costa Ricans are under the impression that a normal life consists of sleeping on floors, wearing rain soaked sneakers day after day, and not knowing if water will flow from the faucet that morning. Fortunately for these people, the Costa Rican Humanitarian Foundation (CRHF) does everything in their power to improve quality of life.
I spoke with the director of the program, Gail Nystrom, about the Costa Rican Humanitarian Foundation’s mission and the wonderful things they do in the community of La Carpio, one of Costa Rica’s poorest areas. The CRHF, founded in 1980, prides itself on the ability to support at risk populations so they can improve the quality of their lives and break the cycle of poverty.
A large part of the success of the CRHF is due to their vast amount of volunteers. You might be wondering where these volunteers come from? Enter Westcoast Connection/360° Student Travel (WCC/360°). Every year WCC/360° sends a large number of motivated student volunteers equipped with the supplies necessary to carry out some of CRHF’s most important missions.
Westcoast Connection/360° Student Travel participants arrive ready to get their hands dirty with any work they can to help. With the help of WCC/360° volunteers, the CRHF was able to build 4,000 beds for families in need. This project is a key initiative for the CRHF and gives children
Trip Member: American Voyageur 2008 Trip Leader: US Explorer 2013, Backpack France, Switzerland and Italy 2014. Backpack Greece & Italy 2015
Though first pitches won’t be thrown until April, yesterday was a day that all baseball fans love – the announcement of this year’s Hall of Fame induction class. To no surprise to anyone, the top vote getters this year were perennial all-star Ken Griffey Jr (earning entry on his first ballot with an astonishing unanimous vote) and Mets & Dodgers hero, Mike Piazza. Rounding out the ballot are one of the most technically dominant hitters in the game, Jeff Bagwell and one of the game’s best leadoff hitters, Tim Raines.
This class of hitters is a change from what we’ve seen over the last few years with pitchers and wizards in the field finding a spot in the hall, but no matter who is inducted, you can guarantee that we’ll be there! Come join us as we witness this amazing induction class at the Baseball Hall of Fame induction weekend on the Major League Madness – 21 days and 9 days program. We’ve also got a 13 day program that does not visit the Hall of Fame.
Join some of the biggest fans of the game as we road trip from Chicago to Washington, D.C. and enjoy 11 Major League Baseball games, 1 Minor League game and great stops at places like Cedar Point Amusement Park, a visit to the Football Hall of Fame, stadium tours and so much more.
Being the Creative and Marketing Manager for WCC/360° has a lot of great perks, like selecting all the amazing photos for brochures, coming up with fun contests for you guys and developing partnerships with cool companies like Roots clothing. However, the ultimate perk came last week when I got to meet with our partners at Seventeen and tour their amazing office in the Hearst Tower! Here’s a little sneak peek of what’s in-store for all you lucky participants this summer.
Westcoast Connection/360° Student Travel has become a Certifying Organization for the President’s Volunteer Service Award, a prestigious award given to those completing community service over a 12 month period of time.
Since our involvement with this award began, we’ve already had alumni earn the Bronze and Silver Medals of distinction and we even have one who is putting their hours towards earning the gold medal – that’s over 150 hours of service in a year! Today, we’d like to share some of their stories with you.
Today November 17th is Take a Hike Day.
Hiking allows us to take a break from screen life, recharge in nature and appreciate breathtaking views. In honor of this great day, we want to give you a sneak-peak (yup, it’s the one day of the year that it makes sense) at some of our fave places to unplug and literally, take a hike!