Service Trip – The Orphanage
Probably the most heart-warming experience of the trip came when the team visited an orphanage stowed away deep in the mountains of Guatemala. Working closely with students from UVG, the team assisted the orphans in a multitude of activities, including the comprehension of air/mass through the use of balloons and a balance, and the construction of different shaped objects through the use of plastic straws. Despite communication difficulties, the young beings were very excited about each and every project, and were very happy to “entertain” everyone that participated.
Universidad del Valle de Guatemala
The Global Technical Workforce, as per its namesake, is all about learning how other countries (and other cultures) do business in a professional, technical environment. While the team did not visit a large industrial site, they did have the opportunity to explore a “familiar” location, as they took a trip to La Universidad del Valle de Guatemala (UVG).
Here, the team toured the chemical, mechanical, and biology labs, and participated in a special luncheon where they interacted with personnel from the university. From one of the largest beetle collections in the world to CNC mold machines, this university had a whole lot to offer, as the team gathered an abundance of knowledge from this trip.
El Lago de Atitlan
The trip to El Lago de Atitlan was another highlight of the trip, as the students were able to experience a plethora of cultural phenomena that were unique to Guatemala. An exquisite lunch on the shores of the lake gave the students a great taste of local life, while the boat tour on the lake itself gave everyone an unprecedented view of the surrounding volcanoes. Furthermore, the group was able to peruse the markets of Santiago Atitlan, as they experienced, first-hand, the bartering system that the Mayans invoked upon their culture.
The Pacaya Hike
One of the most exciting parts of going to Guatemala has to be the fact that the students get to hike up an active volcano. The views are second to none, and being among/above the clouds is absolutely breathtaking. With the help of a local tour guide, the team endured the steep slopes of the volcano, while learning a portion of it’s history along the way. From roasting marshmallows in the natural heat of the mountain to clambering down it, Pacaya proved to be one of the highlights of the trip for both the students and the faculty, as many memorable moments were shared.