There are two words that no student is ever too old to get excited over, those words are: “FIELD TRIP!”
I can clearly recall the day I reviewed the syllabus for the course Confronting Oppression and Institution Discrimination, at the start of my first-year spring semester. The words “field trip” were listed and I instantly became excited. I haven’t been on a field trip in—well let’s just say it’s been a long time! 😊
The course content was one of the richest courses that I’ve ever taken in my life. The semester felt almost like a journey instead of a course. It was amazing to experience this journey with my cohort; it was only our 2nd semester of knowing each other but we truly grew together as we transparently learned about our own unintentional bias, and became more aware of oppression and microaggressions that surround us daily. We learned a variety of practical ways to advocate and how to confront oppression. The course provided a safe place to ask honest questions and address misconceptions of a variety of oppressed populations. The course was a combination of relevant readings, impactful guest speakers, powerful lectures, respectful class discussions, and *drum roll* a field trip!
Our field trip was to the International Civil Rights Center and Museum in downtown Greensboro, NC. I live in Greensboro, so I’d visited this museum many times before. However, this visit was like none other. Experiencing the guided tour with my cohorts, sharing emotions, seeing the compassionate reactive tears of my cohort, and having the opportunity to debrief together afterwards was simply amazing. It was an experience that many of us reference even today. While the field trip didn’t consist of a cool big yellow bus, it was truly a remarkable experience and great way to supplement our coursework.