WAXAHACHIE — Embracing wanderlust, while exploring the various regions and cultures that the world entails perfectly encapsulates the goal of the Culture Club at Waxahachie High School.
Soon, those minds will expand beyond the boards of the United States, as 12 of the 40 club members, French teacher Denise McClure, Culture Club sponsors Gina Geeslin and Michelle Vandiver, and other WISD officials are preparing to venture to Honolulu and Australia, New Zealand, over a 15-day course. In efforts to raise money for their trip abroad, the club is hosting a garage sale in the parking lot of WHS on Saturday, Dec. 10 from 8:00 a.m.- 1:00 p.m.
Senior and well-seasoned world traveler, Tillmon Splawn has already visited Spain, Greece, and Italy with the club over the course of his time at WHS.
“The Culture Club focused on activities that involve different cultures. For instance, we’ve visited a French restaurant so we could see and try the food and a couple of years ago we went to the Greek Festival of Dallas. We try to do things like that a couple time each semester,” Splawn explained.
Before WHS had a Culture Club, a club called New Horizons existed and was similar to what the club is now.
“Mrs. Brown is head of the Spanish Club, and I was head of the French Club, so we decided to put them together and start the Culture Club,” McClure stated. “We also made it to where anyone in the school can be a part of it, grades ninth through twelfth.”
The French teacher noted that a former student who traveled to France, Switzerland, and Germany with the club is now pursuing a degree in international studies. As well as the former student, Splawn plans to pursue a degree in the same field.
“I’ve been studying Spanish for five years now, so it was neat to go to Spain last summer and see the things that we’ve studied and get to use the language. There is only one other student including me who went on a trip with the club before going on the trip this year,” Splawn said.
McClure noted that having an opportunity to study abroad in high school often changes a student’s view and inspires him or her to pursue a different avenue — degree or career-wise — than ever thought possible before traveling abroad.
“Normally we go on spring break, but since it’s a longer trip we decided to go in the summer. We are leaving three days after graduation this year,” McClure stated.
The club hosted a garage sale in 2014, which McClure described as a “success.” Splawn added that the proceeds are “directly benefitting the students going on the upcoming trip.”
Kelsey Poynor, @KPoynor_WDL