College Preparatory School for Girls Grades 3-12

Holton Abroad

Junior Journeys take eleventh graders away from campus where they explore issues related to the environment, poverty, women's equality, universal education, and other United Nations Millennium Development Goals. Each trip maintains a blog while traveling, read about their experiences below.

Read about the journey:


Global Focus: Cultural and Environmental Awareness

There are few countries that have been as hard hit by modernity and climate change as Belize. Changes in temperature and rainfall patterns are altering Belize's watersheds and affecting the rainforest ecosystems. Scientists say that certain animal species, such as lizards and frogs, are dying off; these deaths may be an indication of larger problems to come. Belize's world-famous barrier reefs starkly illustrate the effects of a changing climate. Over the last 15 years, nearly half of these once vibrant reefs have withered into skeletons of white, lifeless rock. This phenomenon, known as "bleaching" is caused by rising ocean temperatures, increased exposure to sunlight and a greater frequency of violent storms—all of which are symptoms of climate change. Belize is a living laboratory where Holton and Landon Middle Schoolers can study climate change up close with their teachers. The biggest barrier to mitigating the effects of climate change in Belize is poverty. More than one-third of Belize's population lives beneath the poverty line. Belizean farmers many times are reduced to slash and burn agricultural practices to feed their families. With increased and improved education, Belizean youth must find new and innovative ways to reverse the effects of climate change.


Lillian B. '20 speaks about the opportunity traveling abroad gave her to stretch herself and learn outside of her comfort zone, click the arrow below to listen.


Global Focus: Universal Education

With a growing, diverse population that already surpasses 1.3 billion people, China has experienced dizzying economic growth, emergence of a middle class, and a rapid rise to power on the world stage. However, in the last decade, development on an unprecedented scale and massive urbanization have resulted in overcrowded cities, mass migration issues, unequal distribution of wealth, and the need for quality education for all. Similar to the United States, China faces the ultimate test of educating young people for the vocational, technical, and academic careers that will continue to drive and sustain national security and economic growth. Holton students will explore the successes, challenges, and goals of the Chinese education system. Through round table discussion with peers, students will exchange perspective on the relationship between knowledge acquisition and creative application. Our journey will include visits to a variety schools, institutions, and non-profit organizations in urban and rural areas dedicated to educating a diverse Chinese population.



Global Focus: Tradition and Modernity

India is an ideal location to observe the effects of globalization. The history and culture of India offer a fascinating look at the role of tradition and its steadfastness in this country of over a billion people. At the same time, India has experienced tremendous economic growth, leading to dramatic social change. All indicators point to sustained growth in the future making India a rising force in an increasingly “flat world.” Despite these impressive economic gains, India still presents extraordinary contrasts and disparities, including in health, wealth, education, and gender roles. India truly is in a period of transition. While in India, students will experience and grapple with the complex issues of development that are evident throughout the country in both the city and in rural areas where 70% of Indians still reside.



Peru’s economy has grown significantly over the last decade making it one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Governmental stability and increased foreign trade and investment have played a crucial role in re-establishing Peru’s presence on the global stage. Empowerment through education, training, and access to micro-financing has enabled women to contribute significantly to the economic story both at a local and national level. Governmental and non-governmental entities fully realize the importance of investing in women. Sustainability is achieved when the social, economic and environmental needs of a community overlap. Women are the foundation of their community. What they learn directly benefits their community and enables sustainable growth. Holton students will explore the ways Peru is engaging women in the promotion and protection of its cultural patrimony.



Global Focus: Linguistic and Cultural Immersion

In 2011, Holton-Arms’ World Language Department, in partnership with CreaEvents Director Antonio Carrera and El Centro Español de Nuevas Profesiones in Madrid, Spain, established a 16-day homestay language immersion program to give our Spanish language students in the 9th and 10th grades the opportunity to live and learn in Spanish. As multi-language learners ourselves, we recognize and appreciate the motivational and academic advances that come from experiential language learning. During our stay in Madrid, Holton students live with host families, attend intensive language classes daily, and participate in guided visits in and around Madrid. Holton Spanish language instructors accompany the students each year with the goal of converting the exciting city of Madrid into a compelling classroom in which to improve their Spanish proficiency.



Global Focus: Language Proficiency and Cultural Competence

The Holton-Arms’ World Language Department, in partnership with the Centre International d'Études Françaises (C.I.D.E.F) in Angers, France, will initiate a 16-day homestay/language immersion program to give our French language students in the 9th and 10th grades the opportunity to live and learn in French. During our stay in Angers, Holton students live with host families, attend two hours of intensive language classes daily, and participate in guided visits in and around the Loire Valley. Holton French language instructors accompany the students each year with the goal of converting the quaint town of Angers into a compelling classroom in which to improve their French proficiency.


New Orleans

In Grade 8, Holton students learn about the culture and history of New Orleans, the unique ecology of the Mississippi River delta, and the impact of poor urban planning on communities within the Lower Ninth Ward specifically. On this five-day Spring break trip to Louisiana, students focus on four distinct areas: 1) efforts to rehabilitate New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina; 2) the disappearing wetlands and marshes of the Gulf Coast ecosystem; 3) urban planning and preparing for the future; and 4) the history and culture that makes New Orleans a distinctive, unique American city. Through this program, students contribute to the dialogue on what ordinary citizens can do to prevent such disasters from happening in the future, witness the challenges, progress, and hope of those who work on a daily basis in the communities most affected by environmental disasters, and become involved in the community’s efforts to rebuild itself.

2017 Trip Blog