PDS to launch second summer trip to China

William Lu, Staff Writer

On June 14, a few of our fellow Princeton Day peers will board a plane to Beijing International Airport, ready to experience the summer of a lifetime in the land of China. First offered two years ago, the PDS China Trip gives a group of 12-15 students the opportunity to travel across both urban and rural China, and experience the unique and rich culture firsthand.

Led by history teachers Lauren Ledley, Dave Freedholm, and Maria Shepard, as well as two instructors from the organization “Where There be Dragons,” participants will engage in adventurous exploration at many national landmarks, gaining valuable insight about conservation and sustainability along the way. They will be hiking up the Great Wall, viewing the majestic rolling hills of Northern China from a stone edifice built over 2000 years ago. After that, they will tour the city of Beijing, visiting Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City with their very own host families, allowing them to fully immerse themselves in life in China. The program also includes a tour around Beijing High School #4, the same school whose students visited our campus a few months ago.

After experiencing the city life, the group will fly to the far less industrialized city of Lijiang, touring the ancient Chinese architecture and visiting a courtyard house. The trip culminates with a journey to the Leaping Tiger Gorge, with the group embarking on a two-day hike there. They will then proceed to visit Tibetan monasteries in Lashihai and finally return home on July 1.

Sophomore Parker Christian outlined the perspective one might have going to China, remarking, “I am definitely a bit scared going somewhere without my family, but the excitement of going somewhere halfway around the world definitely outweighs the negatives.”

Christian’s response is representative of many of the travelers’ feelings, showing signs of trepidation but mainly enthusiasm. This will be a great opportunity for PDS students to venture out into unfamiliar places as they get to explore the outside world.