AVID students travel across state to experience college first hand

Hannah Smith, Staff Writer

Junior and senior AVID students traveled across the state to experience the colleges they had researched and learned about in their AVID classes Nov. 21-23.

“This trip was based on the main mission of AVID, which is to help our students become motivated to go to college,” principal John Luciano said. ‘It allowed them to meet other students and form a connection of support so they can feel that spark that comes with attending college and their achieving goals.”

Junior AVID teacher Alfie Wheeler, along with the help of senior AVID teacher Sarah Pritchard, planned the three day trip. The trip consisted of visits to four colleges: North Carolina State University, Elon University, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and Johnson and Wales University, as well as the annual North Carolina and South Carolina AVID Day and a NBA game between the Charlotte Hornets and Orlando Magic.

“The NC/SC AVID Day was the centerpiece of the trip, so we planned the college visits around that,” Wheeler said. “These visits were a great opportunity for the students to experience both public and private colleges, as well as get a sense of the atmosphere of each school.”

The first day of the trip included a tour of NCSU and Elon University. Former MHS student Haley Guiley gave the AVID students a tour while at NCSU and discussed the challenge of coming to a large university from a small high school.

“The college tours helped me to become more comfortable with the idea of attending college because I realized that even though a campus like NC State may seem huge, it is relatively easy to navigate,” junior Raelee Mayo said.

After the tour at NCSU, the group went to Elon University for a campus visit. The transition from a public university like NCSU to a private university like Elon allowed the students to see the differences in public and private colleges.

“My favorite college tour was Elon,” junior Breanna DeHoog said. “I loved the campus, I loved the tour, I loved everything about it.”

The second day of the trip was spent touring UNC Charlotte and Johnson and Wales University in the morning and attending the NC/SC AVID Day and the NBA game in the afternoon.

“UNC Charlotte was my favorite of the college tours because I loved the atmosphere of the city,” junior Immanuel Norman said. “Our tour guide was very energetic and made the experience fun.”

After completing the college tours the group went to The Time Warner Cable Arena, the home of the Charlotte Hornets, to attend the NC/SC AVID Day. Even though the event was crowded because of the hundreds of students who were in attendance from across the state, members of AVID received information from many colleges and talked to representatives about specific college application processes.

“There were a lot of colleges at AVID Day, so we were able to get information from a lot of colleges at one place,” Norman said. “It was, however, really, really crowded.”

When NC/SC AVID Day was over the group stayed in the arena to watch the Hornets play against the Orlando Magic. Before the game started the group listened to several people in sales management positions discuss what is required to make game day possible.

“Attending the NBA game was my favorite part of the trip,” senior Aaliyah Bryant said. “I had never been to one before, so it was nice to attend something different.”

The Dare Education Foundation provided a $2,000 donation to fund the trip. This donation was part of their annual donation to an enrichment activity for the AVID program at each school. In addition, each AVID student wrote a letter to a local business or community member asking for sponsorship and hand delivered it.

“These letters helped me to realize that people in our community are always willing to give money to further students’ education,” junior Cayla Norman said.

By writing these letters and the follow-up thank you notes, students in AVID connected to the community and learned the skill of writing a letter, which is important in pursuing education and employment after high school.

“These letters helped students learn the importance of taking initiative,” Wheeler said. “They gained communication skills that are imperative in our world, and they helped make this field trip possible.”

Field Trip Sponsors:

OBX Bank

Ace Hardware

Wanchese Fish Company

Renovations by Renaissance

Michelle Wright

Frank Laurie

Patricia Herrera

Domingo Flores

Orville Scarborough

Arty & Pam Tillett

Angela Hecke

Yolanda Midgett

Angela Hecke

Ofelia Gallegos

Michelle Wright

Susannah Burke

Lam Roofing

Nancy Cahoon


Jim Fenz

Kim Grissom


The Christmas Shop

Deven Miller

Carolyn Norman

Tale of the Whale

Haven Creek Baptist Church

Full Moon Cafe