Traveling far from tests

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The dream of summer that keeps bleary-eyed Harrisites sane during busy nights is finally arriving. No one understands the true value of a long vacation better than students here. After all,  what’s more exciting than a vacation far, far away from teachers and collaterals?

Michael Berchansky, a junior, will be leaving the country. “I’m going sightseeing in Japan for two weeks,” commented Michael. He will be accompanied by an aunt, a cousin, and another family. For Michael, Japan will be an enriching experience. “Traveling to Japan will allow me to become a more well-rounded person because I will be exposed to new culture,” he explained.

Sophomore Marcus Barbu plans to spend part of his vacation in Southeastern Europe. “I’m going to stay with some family in Serbia for a few weeks,” he explained. Though he’s been there many times before, he still enjoys the visits, and said that he is “really looking forward to it.”

Junior Gerald Mariscal, is going on a seven-day cruise to the Bahamas. He looks forward to a week of father-son bonding with his dad, who will be his sole companion. “It’s my first time on a cruise and I can’t wait. I get to explore new places, unlike when I stay here and sit around doing nothing,” remarked Gerald. The best part? “I’m planning to get tan to attract the ladies,“ Gerald cheekily added.

Some students are taking advantage of the long vacation by traveling with student organizations. Freshman Kortney Coburn is headed to the Middle East this summer with The Jerusalem Journey, which brings Jewish teenagers in public schools to Israel, to let them learn more about their cultural homeland. She’s hoping that it will be an “awesome experience,” and is excited to “see Israel for the first time, and learn more about [her] heritage.”

Others plan on traveling within the United States.

Freshman Samantha Jaloza will be traveling with West Coast Connections for forty days, touring areas such as Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon, Catalina Island, and parts of California and Western Canada. Samantha says that she wants to “meet people that are my age from all around the country.”

In true THHS spirit, some students will take advantage of the summer to prepare for their futures and pursue their passions. One such student is junior Karen Su, junior. For the second year in a row, she will be attending a Junior State of America program at Georgetown University in Washington D.C., spending three weeks of July in the nation’s capital. In this program for politically active students, Karen will study international relations.

“I honestly loved everything about it. I was so impressed by the Georgetown program that I decided to go for a second time,” she raved. Karen expects exciting new changes for this year’s program. “It was just announced by one of the program directors that we have the opportunity to visit the White House during our time at Georgetown. It’d be great to see the President,” she commented.

Senior Elizabeth Williams will be embarking on a bus tour of Maine this summer.

She will visit zoos and aquariums along the way, spend time in Acadia National Park, and even go whale-watching on a cruise.

As this is her last summer before starting in a new school, she is excited. “I just want to have a fun trip with my friends before we go off to college,” she explained.

The idea of long, hazy summers spent lying around in bed may be appealing to many exhausted Harrisites, but the workload hasn’t stopped some from shaking off the cobwebs and traveling for unforgettable memories.