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WHS Students to Visit Galapagos Islands

The school-sponsored trip will be during the next February vacation.

Westborough High School science teacher Todd Ryan told the school committee Wednesday night that "I've always wanted to give students the same kind of experience that I had in college.”

The board is giving Ryan that chance.

Ryan’s proposed school-sponsored student trip to the Galapagos Islands for the next February school vacation received the board’s approval.

Ryan said that in college, he took a field trip to Louisiana to "visit some of the habitats," and visited some of the Caribbean islands.

"I remember those very strongly," he said.

Westborough High will take EF Tours' program, "Charting the Galapagos Island," he said. Thirteen WHS students and two teachers attended EF Tours' Global Student Leaders Summit: Addressing Environmental Sustainability from April 14 to April 22 in Costa Rica.

The Galapagos Islands group would leave Westborough during the first Saturday of Feburary vacation, and return on Sunday, the day before vacation ends, Ryan said.

The trip would cost about $3,600 for students, and just over $4,000 for adults, he said.

The group would fly into Quito, Ecuador, arriving Saturday night, and leave for Galapagos on Sunday, he said.

On the first day, the group would visit the Charles Darwin Research Center, Ryan said.

The group then would spend three days on different islands. Students would do "a number of different scientific and collecting activities," he said.

Dover-Sherborn High School teacher Anita Lotti also plans to bring a group, from her school, Ryan said. Lotti is a former WHS chemistry and environmental studies teacher, he said.

They are developing a conference, with EF Tours' assistance, for the students to attend during their last day on the trip, which would be in Quito, he said. Students could earn college credit during the conference if they wanted to, he said.

The conference topic would be "whether or not the Galapagos Islands should remain open to tourism," which is "a hot topic in environmental biology," Ryan said.

"There's been a lot of talk of whether it should be, because of the potential damage to the ecosystem," he said.

Mike May 10, 2013 at 12:50 PM
It's not often that I wish I were back in high school, but this sure makes me wish it now. What an incredible opportunity for these kids!
Todd Ryan May 10, 2013 at 07:28 PM
Mike, we can take adults on the trip also! Todd Ryan
Todd Ryan May 10, 2013 at 07:29 PM
The website for the trip is; www.eftours.com/1438242

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