Students to broaden experiences with WATW trip to France

Spring break is
fast approaching, and a group from
William Woods University is making final preparations for the 2012 Woods Around
the World trip to France.

Jane Mudd, assistant professor of art,
and Travis Tamerius, university chaplain and director of the Center for Ethics
and Global Studies, will accompany
six students to Paris, Brittany
and Normany as part of their French
experience March 10-18.

Students making the
trip are Katherine Wortmann, Mexico, Mo.; Alicia Delaney, St.
Charles, Mo.; Eliza Payne, Zionsville, Ind.; Olivia Koselansky, Sterling Heights,
Mich.; Elizabeth Oseroff, Dallas, Texas; and
Sydnee Kuster, Bunceton, Mo.

“At William Woods
University, we view education as a journey of discovery “¦ we believe the very
best journeys are fed by curiosity in the world
around us,” Tamerius said.

“Woods Around the World (WATW) is a unique approach
to education that takes the
student beyond the classroom and the textbook and into the real
world of another culture.”

“I’m excited to see the
Eiffel Tower and just absorb and observe the culture as much as I
can,” said Delaney.

In preparation
for their tour, the
students have been meeting weekly to discuss different
aspects of France and its history,
including the French Revolution, the
art collection in Louvre and architecture
of the great cathedrals.

The main focus,
however, has been on the events that took place on June 6, 1944 – the
infamous day in history known as D-Day – and the
legacy that was left
behind.

“To prepare for this
trip’s particular itinerary, we have been learning about what happened at
Normandy during World War II. We are
also meeting with veterans of World War II to hear their individual
stories,” said Tamerius.

Along with visiting the
American
cemetery in Normandy, the
WWU group will see Notre Dame Cathedral,
the Eiffel Tower, Versailles, Chartres Cathedral and Monet’s Giverny Gardens.

“I am just excited to
finally be going to France,” said Koselansky. “I have wanted to take this
trip ever since I began taking French classes in high school.”

Woods around the World
is in its sixth year
of the program. Previous trips have included Peru, the American Civil
Rights trail, a Holocaust tour, Italy and an Indian reservation in South Dakota.
The location of the trip changes every year, but the reasoning behind each tour
remains unchanged.

“We try to move around
the globe looking for meaningful and educational trips that take into
consideration a host of factors including student interest, affordability, our
own resources and safety concerns,” Tamerius said.

“Some of the trips are
aimed at a cultural immersion experience.  Some of them are focused on
service-learning.  All of them are attempts at fetching a good story, the
kind of story that supports
our academic mission at William Woods.”

For more information
about this and other Woods Around the World trips, check out the
“Woods Around the World-William Woods University” YouTube slideshow
at www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ht_9Cx3txoI
and
the Woods Around the World 2012 blog at http://watw2012.wordpress.com.