An Unforgettable Trip

An Unforgettable Trip

December 1, 2015

Fun Facts

  • There’s a beach on campus at FGCU.
  • Florida Poly’s IST building has a bookless library; everything is digital.
  • FSU’s famous football stadium is currently being renovated.
  • UF has a water-saving laundry on campus

    Alico Arena at FGCU
    Alico Arena at FGCU


Preparing for the future, Miami Senior High’s class of 2017 traveled to different universities in Florida to get a taste of the college life.

On this once-in-a-lifetime trip, forty-eight lucky juniors visited Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) in Ft. Myers, Florida Polytechnic University in Lakeland, Florida State University (FSU) in Tallahassee, and University of Florida (UF) in Gainesville. This year’s trip was bigger than past year’s. CAP counselor Mr. Bain said they usually only visited three schools, and only forty students were allowed to go.

Everyone had a favorite of the four schools. “My favorite was FSU because I feel like they would challenge me to become a better, more dedicated person to what I aspire to be,” said Maria Maldonado.

“UF was my favorite because walking the streets and seeing everything that was going around made me feel like home,” said Pablo Iraheta.

Linda Walters liked the

classrooms at Florida Poly because students could write on windows and walls there and because each classroom had a recording camera to tape classes if you are absent.


On the other hand, some schools weren’t everyone’s cup of tea. Gabriella Barraza said, “FSU was my least favorite because of all the hills and how big it was.” Diego Reyes didn’t like FGCU because “those bees were out of control.” Kelly Banegas found Florida Poly to be bland.

The Innovation, Science and Technology (IST) building at Florida Poly
The Innovation, Science and Technology (IST) building at Florida Poly

Students who take tours of college campuses are at a clear advantage over those who don’t. “The exposure provides additional confidence when making life-changing decisions such as choosing where to apply,” said Mr. Bain. “It is also beneficial because those who attend can serve as sources of information for others who were unable to attend.”

Students on the tour are able to get admissions information that can only be attained by having formal tours. Mr. Bain said, “They get a sense of what it’s like to attend each university by learning the information on majors and learning about diversity of populations and traditions specific to each college setting.”

Students had their own reasons to attend the trip. Maryelin Leal said, “I’ve been thinking about college a lot lately, and I’ve always wanted to get far from Miami and grow independent under my own roof, so I thought this was the perfect opportunity to see what universities were best for me and the major I want to choose, which is English/Writing.”

Ana Matta thought it would be a fun experience. “I would be able to get a taste of what going to a university would be like,” she said.

Franco Hernandez said that he wanted to experience new places.

The field trip was announced for the first time during the junior assembly

The Westcott Building at FSU
The Westcott Building at FSU

back in September. That’s a pretty long time to build up expectations. Were they met? Angie Betancourt said, “It exceeded my expectations. I had an amazing time with my friends, the bus rides were fun, and the universities were breath-taking.”


Randy Gregorio said that the trip was very informative. Franco Hernandez said, “It exceeded my expectations exponentially; I didn’t think I would have so much fun.”

Of course, there’s always a catch for nice things. The main requirement was to have a 3.4 weighted GPA or higher, but students with a lower GPA were allowed to go if they were Student Government leaders, or if they could prove they were eligible through some other means like test scores, community service, sports, band, or being enthusiastic about going, said Mr. Bain.

Many happy memories were made during this trip. “My favorite part was the bus ride to Tallahassee because we were blasting music and singing along to our favorite songs, and when it got dark, we were telling scary stories,” said Randy Gregorio.

Pablo Iraheta enjoyed the chaperones (CAP advisor Mr. Bain, AP Mr. Arscott, girls volleyball coach Ms. Vela, and language arts department chairperson Ms. Suarez) because they were very nice and gave some advice on how to get in one of the universities for the future.

I learned so much about all these different schools,” Maria Maldonado said. “I made new friends, and I feel like it just brought all of us closer than we were before.”

Angie Betancourt said, “I will forever be grateful to our principal Mr. Valdes and Mr. Bain for giving us the opportunity to visit all 4 universities! I would totally recommend students to sign up for next year!”

Not everything, however, was su

Class of '17 posing with the Bull Gator at UF
Class of ’17 posing with the Bull Gator at UF

nshine and rainbows. There were some complaints. William Villalta didn’t like how during the bus ride some people just didn’t know when to stop being so loud. Isabella Pujol didn’t like how far they had to travel to get to the other schools. For example, it took 2 hours to get from Miami to FGCU. And it took 5 hours to get from UF back to Miami.


Since this was an overnight trip, students spent the night at Quality Inn Suites in Tallahassee with 3 roommates. Isabella Pujol said, “The girls and I stayed up doing each other’s hair and laughing all together!”

William Villalta said, “The hotel was great, especially since breakfast was included. Who doesn’t love free food?”

Angie Betancourt said, “It was such a great time to sleepover with friends and listen to music, laugh and basically just have fun!”

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