With only one month left, time is running out to apply to Trip of a Lifetime. Don’t just take our word from it. Here’s a message from Harleigh M on why every student should be part of this great opportunity.
”Trip of a Lifetime (TOAL) is a non-profit organization that uses summer travel experiences to unlock the true potential in underprivileged students in grades 8-11, enabling them to become the leaders of tomorrow. In other words, TOAL allows students, who would have never been able to do so otherwise, to travel during the summer so that they can grow from their experience. It may sound strange, but I can testify that it works- I’m a TOAL alumni from summer 2013. Thanks to TOAL, I got to spent 25 days of my summer travelling the west coast. I went to the Grand Canyon, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Los Angeles and more! Other than the extreme amount of fun I had, I also learned more about myself than I would have if I had spent the summer working. I learned the value of opening up, making new friends, and not being afraid to take the lead in activities.
My experience with TOAL has made me a better person. My trip was a blend of travelling and community service. I spent four days in Zion canyon and Bryce canyon, eleven days between the Grand canyon, Sedona Arizona, Las Vegas, Lake Tahoe, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, and ten days on the campus of the University of California, Santa Barbara doing community service four hours each day. Throughout all this, I made amazing friends, stayed on a real college campus, faced my fear of heights, rode more roller coasters than I can count, went zip-lining, go karting, bowling, roller skating, surfing, and biking, climbed a ropes course, visited Alcatraz, went to a Dodger’s game, stayed in a log cabin on a beach, shopped in Vegas, attended a festival, walked down Rodeo drive, went hiking, played with a dolphin, rode in a jeep, and so much more! Along the way I learned how to be more open with people, and how to step up as a leader instead of sitting by and letting things happen without making a decision. All in all I feel like I am a better person from the experiences, and I never thought I could become that just by having fun with a bunch of other kids my age.
Now you may be thinking ‘hey, that all sounds expensive’ and you’d be right- these kinds of trips are very pricey, which is why TOAL was established! If accepted you won’t need to worry about a thing- Trip of a Lifetime has you covered. For my trip, I was given a TSA lock for my luggage, an awesome Vapur water bottle, a travelers backpack with more pockets than I could ever imagine needing, an American Express gift card to spend along the way, a Balanzza luggage scale to avoid overweight fees, and support so that someone was always available to answer all of my questions. Trip of a Lifetime is an amazing program to be a part of, and if you’ve ever dreamed of travelling, making new friends, having an adventure you’ll never forget, or even just getting away from the city for a little while, I highly suggest applying. What do you have to lose? To apply go to www.projecttoal.org/apply and follow the directions. Just be yourself when you fill it out; there’s no need to stress yourself about it. The deadline to apply is March 15th so I suggest you get moving.”