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2017 USA Education Tour

This May, students and teachers throughout the Huckabee School of Education will be touring, traveling and
learning throughout five different states as part of the new USA Education Tour.

“We already offer an international trip through our partnership with Liverpool Hope University in London. We had a
vision to also offer a domestic trip and this May will be the first time for this to take place,” Dr. Rachel Pool,
assistant professor of education said.

The two-week trip will take place as a May-term course May 14-25. The trip is open to all sophomore and junior
education majors enrolled in Child and Adolescent Development, Special Topics, Teaching Social Studies or
Learning and Assessments. Graduating seniors are also invited to join the tour to take part in the learning experience.

“This is going to be a life-changing trip. We will be going to West Memphis Academies in Arkansas, Cornerstone
Schools in Alabama, Ron Clark Academy in Georgia, Mennonite School in Pennsylvania and Manhattan Christian
Academy in New York,” Pool said. “We really want to get into schools with diversity. We want to showcase
students from all different types of backgrounds.”

Students will have the chance to meet several OBU alum, as well as other successful and impactful educators at each

The trip is an opportunity for education students to see teaching in action in settings outside Ouachita. They will
have the opportunity to experience other cultures, religious views, urban settings, as well as various demographical
differences. Students will also take classes and observe classrooms and teachers. Some will even be teaching lessons
at the schools they will be visiting as part of their May-term coursework.

“I’m really excited about this trip because it will allow us to experience teaching in all different types of classroom
settings, from inner-city Manhattan to Amish country in Pennsylvania,” sophomore elementary education major,
Robin Kelley said. “It really is a once in a lifetime trip and I’m so excited to take it.”

“Our focus is to make students aware of Title 1 Schools, meaning schools where the community is servicing low
socio-economic status families. For most of these places, education is a great thing in the community, aiding students
to be successful wherever they go,” Pool said. “We are trying to show a range of possibilities that OBU students can
look towards after graduation. OBU education students really have a heart for missions. They know and believe that
teaching is a calling and we want to make sure they are set up for success in whatever setting they are going to be
The education tour will cost approximately $2,570.00 per student, however the Riley Gray Pool Memorial Fund, in
honor of Dr. Pool’s late daughter, will assist students in paying.

“Thinking through the entire experience with my daughter, I know that one of these students could have potentially
been Riley’s teacher. I want to make sure they are set up for success, with all different types of experiences, for their
futures in teaching,” Pool said. “I know that if she were to have an OBU teacher, her life would have been changed.”

“We know that with this trip, we are able to travel and experience full days of classroom involvement. I want to
make sure the donors of the memorial fund know we are using their money wisely. Their contributions are
influencing hundreds of teachers, who will then influence thousands of students,” Pool said.

Pool has a vision to help students be extraordinary, not just ordinary.

“We can help students teach like the Master teacher. If we can mirror Jesus through our classroom management,
lesson plan design, and our communication skills then I truly believe we can change the world like He did,” Pool
said. “Teaching is a mission field.”

By: Abbey Little, Staff Writer