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Cultural Thursday at CLC: BHS Meets the Inca

Kurtz.Peru.MarketAnother Cultural Thursday event will be held at noon on Thursday, Oct. 1 in the Central Lakes College Chalberg Theatre, Brainerd campus.

The event will feature former CLC (and Brainerd High School) Spanish instructor Jan Kurtz, who will be sharing her experiences as one of five chaperones who traveled with 42 BHS students on their March 2015 Spanish Club trip to Peru.

Of the trip, Kurtz said “[It] offered the opportunity to fulfill two wishes. One was to see Machu Picchu and the other was to travel with Spanish teachers Britt Qualley and Dawn Maine, colleagues and friends, under the auspice of promoting Spanish study and travel.”

Their week-long stay was based in the ancient Inca capital of Cusco, with side trips to Inca ruins of Sacsayhuaman, an Inca fortress, Pisac, the Sacred Valley and yes, Machu Picchu. Local historical sites included Koricancha-The Temple of the Sun, Puca-Pucara and the Tambomachay Incan ruins.

According to Kurtz, the core of this travel was the family stay experience, providing a language and cultural immersion for students and chaperones.

“Being inside a home, eating with families and using their Spanish on a daily basis are paramount for learning and relationship building,” she said.

The group also participated in two school visits outside of Cusco.

The BHS students donated funds to buy basic school supplies, which they delivered directly to the children.

“The train to Aguas Calientes and day spent at Machu Picchu were definite highlights, but the trips to visit neighboring school children are likely among the most impressionable memories,” Kurtz said.

This trip highlighted the relationships of the historical Inca and Spaniard, the current Peruvians and the BHS students, as well as the interpersonal group skills that traveling together demands. And now, to bring this journey full circle, Kurtz will share these lessons with the community.


For more information on CLC Cultural Thursdays contact Tracey Kloeckl-Jiménez at 218-855-8183.






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