In late March, 16 high school juniors and seniors worked on solving problem-based projects and learning how to become stronger leaders while exploring Peru’s Sacred Valley. They, along with Evolutions teachers Ms. Emily Shapero and Mr. Thom Henes, attended a nine day Global Leadership Summit run by Education First (EF) educational tours.

Along with the conference, students toured historic Lima by bike, visited Machu Picchu and the Ollantaytambo heritage site, as well as touring Cusco and visiting local weavers in the Sacred Valley. Students worked in a groups with other students on solving issues in Peruvian communities.

I hope students get to see the real-world significance of global problem solving. This conference focuses on cultural stewardship and globalism, looking at how countries are using their political, economic, and social systems to solve problems and preserve their cultural heritages,” Shapero said prior to the trip.

“I hope that students saw that they do have the knowledge and skills needed to actually solve issues in the world, not just talk about them,” said Shapero.

Principal Dr. Jamie Chisum was inspired to give WHS students an opportunity to attend an EF conference after he visited a summit a few years ago in The Hague, Netherlands. Shapero and Henes originally got involved in leading the trip when Chisum first wanted the trip to be exclusively available to Evolutions students. Since then, all upperclassmen have been offered the opportunity to go on the trip.

Shamus Miller ’17 traveled with the high school to the conference and felt it provided learning opportunities the classroom could not.“The Peru trip was honestly one of the highlights of my time at the high school,” he said. “It was an incredible opportunity to bond with students and teachers who I would not have otherwise met, much less become friends with and to be exposed, even if just for a few days, to a country so different from the United States and the unique successes and challenges that Peru has experienced.”


–Max Tracey ’19, News Editor


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