Johnson Center Students Enjoy Trip to Washington, DC

     Published on 6/2/16   Tagged under:    District News    Academics    Johnson Center / Adult Education   

A team of teachers at the Johnson Center, led by Jenniffer Benedetto, recently took 20 of their hardest working students on a trip to Washington, DC! The students were hoping to expand their horizons, as many had never been out of Syracuse, and they were looking forward to exploring museums and exhibits in Washington, DC that they have only heard about or seen in textbooks. 
"Our school is stigmatized as being a place where 'bad kids’ go,” English teacher Jenniffer Benedetto said. “Sadly, a majority of our students have internalized this stereotype. We are working relentlessly with our students, their families and community members to turn this school into a nurturing and thriving environment with rich educational experiences that go far beyond the classroom walls, and this trip was symbolic of our mission and the changes we are trying to realize for our students."
On the 24-hour visit, students saw toured the White House, visited Ford’s Theater, saw the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Memorial, Jefferson Memorial and Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial. They even visited the Smithsonian Museums, Arlington Cemetery and enjoyed a meal at Ben’s Chili Bowl! 
For student Isaiah Norvel, meeting a veteran was the highlight of his trip. “I want to go into the Marines, so the changing of the guard ceremony at Arlington opened my eyes to a lot,” he said. “And when we took a picture with a veteran, it helped me feel humble and grateful for what soldiers have done for us. It was really nice to honor them and it made me feel inspired to serve my country.”
Classmate Nhy-Zar Tuitt noted the difference between how things looked in person versus in a textbook. “The monuments were way bigger than I thought they would be,” he explained. “It was so interesting to be there where history really happened. That trip is one of the things in my life I know I will never forget.” 
Thank you to the teachers at Johnson Center for leading efforts to bring students on this once-in-a-lifetime trip!