H9 Humanities department planning Europe trip for 2024


Provided by: Kelley Ferguson

AP Human Geography teacher Kelley Ferguson and her students pose for a photo on a trip to Iceland in 2019. They focused mostly on outdoor activities during the trip. “[This] was my favorite [trip] because I had never been to that area before, and it was spectacular,” Ferguson said.

The H9 Humanities department is in the process of planning a trip to Europe that will take place in the summer of 2024 and last for 15 days. During this trip, students will visit London, Paris, Czech Republic, Austria and Germany. 

“The most recent [trip] I did, [which was] right before COVID, was a trip to Iceland, which was my favorite of all of them because I had never been to that area before,” AP Human Geography Teacher Kelley Ferguson said. “It was spectacular.” 

The trip is sponsored by Ferguson, and this is her fifth time traveling with students. This year, English I teacher Cassie Madewell will be working on a trip with Ferguson for the first time. 

“Teaching humanities for four years gave us four years worth of 200 students each year, so I thought we could fill [the trip this year],” Madewell said. “I’ve always wanted to [travel with students,] I just didn’t know that it would be possible.”

Over 70 students applied for this year’s trip, but only 43 will be able to attend. Despite this, this is the biggest group Ferguson has ever traveled with. To accommodate, Ferguson and Madewell plan to implement a 6:1 ratio (six students per chaperone) to make it easier to keep track of each student. 

“I’m really excited to learn about the places that [we’re visiting] because I’ve never been to [any of them] before,” freshman Cara Shen said. “[I’m also looking forward] to being [able to] learn with an educator, meet new people and try new things.” 

The trip is organized through Educational Tours (EF), a company known for organizing student trips and offering students the opportunity to travel and learn about the world. Ferguson said their primary purpose is for students to learn about the world and their role in it. 

“What [inspired] me to take students on trips was my first time traveling abroad without my parents,” Ferguson said. “I backpacked through Europe and had so many learning experiences along the way and grew so much as a person.” 

The 2024 H9 Humanities Europe trip will be led by English teacher Cassie Madewell and AP Human Geography teacher Kelley Ferguson. This is Madewell and Ferguson’s fourth year teaching alongside each other and this is their first trip together. (Shiren Noorani)

Madewell said the main purpose of this trip is to explore the world and be able to learn from it. It’s meant to be both a fun and educational trip that students will remember. 

“The more that we experience the world around us, the more we understand how it works and our place in it,” Madewell said.