Cultural immersion: Williams High School students visit Yucatan Peninsula

By Zoie Nelson
Times-News correspondent 

Fourteen students from Williams High School visited the Yucatan Peninsula during July. / Photo submitted

   During the early morning hours of July 14, 14 students from Williams High School took off for an adventure of a lifetime in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. During their time, students were able to immerse themselves in both Mayan and Mexican culture. They traveled to a different city in the Peninsula every few days, never staying more than three nights in the same city.
“I was always excited to see what the new place would look like and what adventures it would hold,” said Hannah Chen.
Even though they were only there for a short time, many communities accepted them and taught them something new. There was always something new waiting for them in each city. The students got to visit about 10 Mayan ruins and learn quite a bit about their history. One of the most well-known ruins they visited was Chichen Itza, one of the wonders of the world.
“That was my favorite,” said Cameron Clark.
Students also got to observe different animals native to Mexico. They visited both a monkey reserve and a flamingo sanctuary, and saw quite a few wild animals roaming the forest. But when asked what their favorite part of the trip was, the group agrees that playing with the different children in the villages and meeting new people was the best part.
   The group was led by Freebird McKinney, local teacher who has been taking students on trips like this for a couple years now through the organization Dustin’s Greenhouse. These trips are meant to teach students different life lessons and show them another aspect of life. This was the first group from Burlington to go on a Dustin’s Greenhouse trip and it definitely will not be the last.
If you would like to support Dustin’s Greenhouse, find out more about trips such as this one, or get involved please visit

Zoie Nelson is a rising senior at Williams High School and a Teens & 20s writer.


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