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Delivering Digital Prep News Since 2024

The Little Hoya

The Little Hoya

Delivering Digital Prep News Since 2024

The Little Hoya

Hoyas In France: The 2024 Global Scholars Trip

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This spring break, twelve Prep students, myself included, took the Global Scholars trip to France led by Mr. Tirado and Mr. Williams. Our two week adventure began with several days in Paris. Immediately upon arriving we visited the Louvre, where we explored the Greek and Roman sculpture exhibits and the classical paintings from France and Italy, including the Mona Lisa. Our first day then concluded with a long walk along the Seine River where we stopped for lunch and enjoyed a street band playing on one of the bridges.

Our next few days included more Paris sightseeing. We saw Les Invalies, a former hospital which has now been converted into an extensive military museum housing Napoleon’s ornately decorated tomb. We also received an exterior tour of Notre Dame Cathedral and were able to see the newly constructed spire and repairs after the 2019 fire. Our group also stopped for some photos at the Eiffel Tower and the Arch de Triumphe. The last day in Paris was spent at the Palace of Versailles, where we toured the gilded halls and vast gardens once owned by Louis XIV.

Prep Students At the Eiffel Tower

In addition to the sightseeing, we also explored some of Paris’s small cafes, restaurants, and bakeries, finding that France’s culinary reputation is well earned. Crème brûlée was the favorite dessert of those of us on the trip. We also took several tours around the city both on foot and on bike, which allowed us to further experience the gorgeous city.

Our next stop was the small town of Caen, the political capital of Normandy. From here, we took a bus tour to several historical sites from the invasion of Normandy in 1944, including Omaha Beach, where tens of thousands of US soldiers, including Prep graduate and Medal of Honor recipient Michael Daly, ’41, landed to begin the liberation of France in World War II. On our last day in Normandy we visited the Normandy American Cemetery where nearly 10,000 US soldiers who died in northern France are buried. We also got to see William the Conqueror’s castle and Caen Cathedral.

The third and final leg of our visit was in Bordeaux, a major city in southwestern France. Here we were hosted by students from Lycée Magendie, an international school in Bordeaux. Our hosts showed us the sights of the city, took us out to eat, and day tripped with us to the nearby beach at Arcachon. Several of us also watched the Bordeaux v Toulouse rugby match with our host families. Additionally, we accompanied them to morning classes on our last day in the city. It was a fantastic experience and my personal favorite from the trip. All of our hosts were extremely generous and all of us enjoyed immersing ourselves in French daily life for a few days.

The Global Scholars trip to France was not only a fun way to spend break, but an unforgettable experience. For those of us who had never been, myself included, it was a wonderful introduction to the culture and life of France. For those of us who had been before, it was a chance to experience new parts of the country and live with locals, experiencing a taste of what it’s like to be French.

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