West Side Students Take On Europe

Students+attended+church+and+saw+the+Notre+Dame%2C+two+days+prior+to+the+fire+in+Paris%2C+France.
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West Side Students Take On Europe

Students attended church and saw the Notre Dame, two days prior to the fire in Paris, France.

Students attended church and saw the Notre Dame, two days prior to the fire in Paris, France.

Meghan Pinter

Students attended church and saw the Notre Dame, two days prior to the fire in Paris, France.

Meghan Pinter

Meghan Pinter

Students attended church and saw the Notre Dame, two days prior to the fire in Paris, France.

Molly Kennedy, Sports Editor

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Every other year students in the French and Italian 2, 3, and 4 classes travel to Europe during spring break. This year 13 students from WSHS participated in the week long trip. Students were able to visit many iconic landmarks including the Eiffel Tower and the Sistine Chapel.  

They also are able to experience the culture in these two countries. “I love hearing students actually try out their French and Italian to interact with people! I think students feel so empowered when they see what they can accomplish, and it’s great to see them grow more confident as the week wears on,” said French teacher, Jessica Moore. The French and Italian teachers put together the trip with the help of a travel company.


Students saw and walked through the Arc de triomphe in Paris, France.

Many schools take trips abroad during spring break. Students from WSHS toured Europe with students from Westboro, Massachusetts and New Orleans, Louisiana. They spent two nights in Paris, and five nights in Italy: one night in Milan, two nights in Florence, and two nights in Rome.

When in France, tour participants climbed the Eiffel Tower, viewed art in the Louvre Museum, walked through the Arc de triomphe, and visited the Pantheon.

Photos courtesy of Meghan Pinter
Students saw the Colosseum while in Rome, Italy.

The students also had the opportunity to visit Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, just two days before the fire that partially destroyed it. “It was pretty with stained glass windows and lots of artwork inside,” mentioned Sophomore Meghan Pinter. After finding out about the tragedy, “The students were emotionally affected by it, clearly, but also they were more open to experiences after that event because you really never know if you’ll get the chance to go somewhere or see something again,” said Mrs. Switzer.

Italy had many highlights for the group. While in Milan, they saw Italy’s oldest active shopping mall the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, and went to the Milan Cathedral. In Florence they saw The David, Ponte Vecchio, and the Florence Cathedral where they went up the bell tower. While roaming around Rome the students saw the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain, Ancient Roman Ruins, and Santa Croce. Then they went to the Vatican City and saw the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica.

The students where exposed a totally different cultural experience. While in France students noticed how rude French people can be to tourists. They learned it was better to not look too much like a tourist.


Students saw and went up the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France.

Along with sightseeing, students were able to sample lots of European cuisine. They experienced “frivolous things like how Italians don’t put ice in their drinks needs to be experienced to be truly believed,” said the Italian teacher Sara Switzer. They also encountered many gelato shops in Italy, where the frozen dessert is popular. “Lindsay, Chris and I had a goal of eating 10 gelatos in the span of four days,” said Meghan Pinter.

At the end of an exhausting week of travel, the students appreciated the experience. They got very nice weather with the exception of one day, and all their traveling went smoothly.

Tips students give to people traveling to Europe are to watch out for pickpockets and keep your bag in front of you while walking. “Take your time and don’t rush through the trip, spend time appreciating the location,” advised junior, Kali Patridge.

WSHS students who traveled to Europe were able to see many of the sights that France and Italy hold, and experience a new culture.