The tradition of offering an annual two-week international summer experience that focuses on service and cultural exchange, started more than a decade ago at Nueva. The trips are optional for students in grades 7-8 trips, and run independently of the school, however Nueva teachers plan and lead trips. Nueva students and teachers have engaged in some impressive projects in very interesting parts of the world! Here's a list of all the great service trips Nueva groups have engaged in.
- Ten years ago: built a community center in Ecuador
- Nine years ago: painted a school in Fiji
- Eight years ago: taught English and helped build a school cafeteria in Thailand
- Seven years ago: helped restore a Buddhist monastery in Mongolia
- Six years ago: worked with Senegalese families on their farms, an amazing experience facilitated by the learning adventure company Where There Be Dragons
- Five years ago: restored two schools in the Indian state of West Bengal with Where There Be Dragons
- Four years ago: joined Where There Be Dragons on an island in Southeast Asia's Mekong for several rural development projects such as building chicken coops and installing biodigesters
- Three years ago: worked at a Peruvian "Potato Park," helping local farmers and learning about sustainable agriculture
- Two years ago: built a small recycling center and taught English in Ladakh on Northern India's Tibetan plateau
- Last year: cleared a park of invasive species on the Galapagos Islands
In summer 2012, a Nueva group will travel to the center of the Incan world to work with traditional villages in the Bolivian Andes! Projects will likely involve sustainable agriculture, reforestation, and trail building. Few countries in the world can claim the cultural and geographical diversity of Bolivia -- soaring peaks, lush Amazon forests, an indigenous majority, a history of social mobilization, and an innovative form of democracy. Where There Be Dragons has run programs in Bolivia since 2005, and with its immense network of contacts -- from theater groups in the bustling indigenous metropolis of El Alto to Kallawaya medicine men in the northern Apolobamba mountains -- the company can create a one-of-a-kind custom program for Nueva.