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The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

Six Student Summer Plans

A view from Teton Valley Ranch in Dubois, Wyoming. Seventh grader Anita Kunsman is attending the camp this summer. (Courtesy of Teton Valley Ranch Camp)

Coppery sunlight streams through the windows of the AAA building as excited chatter fills the halls between classes, heralding the imminent arrival of summer break. Every summer brings new plans; trips, camps, internships, relaxation and more. Here are some of the activities being done this summer.

Claire Ewing

Freshman Claire Ewing will attend Top Rank, a soccer camp in Potomac, Maryland. It’s a camp for all age ranges and levels of experience, though Ewing says that she falls in “the older age range and the lower experience range.” 

The week-long camp is not sleepaway, as Ewing found out at age 12 that she gets homesick at camp. Now, she sees camp as “a pre-pre-season” where she can spend time with a friend group outside school. She looks forward to improving her soccer skills, but doesn’t really know what to expect. “I’ve never been, so we’ll see what it’s like,” Ewing said.

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Nora Galizia

Amidst the chaos of post-high school summer, senior Nora Galizia will continue an experience she has been participating in for more than six months: volunteering as a Montgomery County EMT. “I started looking for volunteer opportunities in the medical field, [because] that’s what I’m interested in, starting in ninth grade,” Galizia said. 

This year, she heard from WIS alumna Mia Chao about the Montgomery County Fire and EMS volunteer program, and she decided to apply. Because volunteer slots on the ambulance are full, she works on the fire truck, tending to patients, checking their vitals and bringing them to the ER. 

Meeting every Saturday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Galizia admits that the schedule is tough. “With the IB, it’s kind of brutal,” she said. “You just have to decide how you want to spend your time.”

The experience, to her, has been priceless. “It’s not something that can be classroom-taught.”

Jonathan Gardiner

Seventh grader Jonathan Gardiner is returning to Camp Coda this summer, a music camp in Maine which he attended last year. The six-and-a-half-week camp is “music-focused but also balances traditional camp activities,” including swimming, sports and arts and crafts.

Gardiner chose to attend the camp because his mom also attended it several years ago. Though it’s a commitment, he said that the sign-up process is low-pressure. “You don’t even have to be good at [music],” he said.

Madeleine Fine

Finding a camp can be as easy as reloading a website. In fact, that’s how sophomore Maddy Fine found out about the SciencesPo summer program she’s participating in this summer. “It’s in France [and] it teaches political science; that’s a pretty good combo right there,” she said.

Fine is one of 100 high schoolers from around the world attending the three-week camp, and she’s looking forward to going in depth into topics like economics and political science. 

“Although school classes are interesting, you don’t get to focus on topics that are as narrow as something like political science,” she said. “I’m excited to just get a 100% focus on that discipline.”

Anita Kunsman

Horseback riding, rock carving and secret ceremonies are only some of the activities held at Teton Valley Ranch in Dubois, Wyoming, according to seventh grade student Anita Kunsman. She’s attending the camp for the third year in a row this summer.

The camp is activity-oriented, and it has a social side as well. “You mostly hang out with your cabin, but… you still spend time with others every day,” Kunsman said.

A four day horseback riding trip and a three day backpacking trip are the highlights of the experience for Kunsman, but she looks forward to the food and “just the camp activities, day to day.”

Gabriel Piris

This summer, junior Gabriel Piris wants to “find different ways [he] can view the world” through a summer program at Brown University. He is participating in two week-long courses in astronomy and ancient art.

“They’re both things that I don’t really want to do with my life, but I think it’s just a fun way to explore interests,” Piris said.

Being surrounded by people who are “knowledgeable, in some aspects” is part of the appeal to Piris. Summer programs, for him, have always been about “find[ing] people that speak to you.”

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Tindra Jemsby
Tindra Jemsby, 9/10 Journalism Class Editor

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