Paradise Teens Who Overcame Wildfire Losses Receive Scholarships for Educational Travel | WorldStrides

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PARADISE, California – Having weathered the destruction of the Camp wildfire six months ago, students from the region will experience the tradition of year-end travel learning experiences, thanks to funds from WorldStrides, the SYTA Youth Foundation, and other partners. The middle and high schoolers will cap this challenging year with trips domestically and abroad, on which they will enhance their civic understanding with experiential learning opportunities on the East coast, celebrate their graduation in Southern California, and act on-stage at the world-renowned Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Many students involved, as well as a Program Leader, lost homes or property as a result of the fires. In response to the tragedy, the trips, which are all run by WorldStrides, have been funded by significant donations from our organization, the SYTA Foundation, and other partners to ensure their continuation and success.


Middle schoolers traveling to Washington, D.C. and NYC

On a program that has been a tradition for more than 25 years, 99 middle schoolers will travel across the country to Washington, D.C. and New York City to learn about U.S. history and government and see the American landmarks in these iconic locations. This trip will be led by retired teacher Roland Resendez. This year, students come from schools including Chico Junior High School, Paradise Intermediate School, Ridge Junior High School, Children’s Community Charter school, Achieve Charter School, and Paradise Charter Middle School.


High Schoolers celebrating graduation

53 students from Paradise High School will celebrate their graduation with a three-day celebration at Universal Studios Hollywood, Disney California Adventure and Newport Beach. This celebration program has been a tradition for the senior class, organized by the school’s activities director and class officers.

Theater group to perform at Festival Fringe in Scotland

44 students from Inspire School of Arts and Sciences in Chico will travel to Edinburgh, Scotland in July for the world-famous Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Under the direction of theater teacher Erin Horst, the students will stage a play as part of the Fringe alongside professionals from all of the world. This once-in-a-lifetime performance opportunity is part of by American High School Theatre Festival, a division of WorldStrides.


“This year, more than ever, I think it is important that the kids of this community get a chance to do something different and enjoy themselves,” explained WorldStrides’ CEO Robert Gogel. “We also wanted to honor the local educators who champion these trips for the community year after year, and we thought the best way to do that was to ensure that the tragedy wouldn’t keep the trips from happening this year.”

Annually, the SYTA Youth Foundation provides a Silver Lining experience to recognize students who have demonstrated through their action, intention, or circumstance the desire to expand their awareness, creating a dramatic life change. “We really appreciate the leadership of WorldStrides and SYTA members to make this trip a reality,” shared SYTA and SYTA Youth Foundation CEO, Carylann Assante, CAE.

About SYTA Youth Foundation

The SYTA Youth Foundation (SYF), the philanthropic division of the Student & Youth Travel Association (SYTA), provides access to travel opportunities for young people that would otherwise be unavailable due to family economic hardship, budget cuts in school systems or simply lack of access to or education about travel as a learning experience. The SYTA Youth Foundation is focused on changing young lives through travel.

About WorldStrides

WorldStrides is the largest provider of educational travel and experiences in the United States. The company was founded in 1967 to provide middle school travel programs to Washington, D.C., and has grown to provide educational experiences for more than 400,000 students annually from more than 5,000 K12 schools and universities to over 100 countries around the world. The organization’s full suite of programs are tuned to learners at all stages from elementary through post-graduate levels, and feature specializations like performing arts, sports, career exploration, and study abroad.

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