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Class Trip Becomes Lesson in International Relations

Hillsborough High students joined by Korean officials on steps of Lincoln Monument.

An annual class trip to visit the National Holocaust Museum and other sights in Washington, DC, for students in Hillsborough High School's Jeff Kampf's class took added twist this year, as the students were joined by several members of the South Korean National Assembly on the steps of the Lincoln Monument.

Kampf's tour always includes visits to the White House, the World War II, Korean and Vietnam War memorials, as well as the MLK Memorial, and along the way, he discusses the importance and history behind each, something that senior Nicole Tallman said made the trip more educational.

"It wasn't just a fun trip, we were learning the whole time," she said.

She was awestruck at the Lincoln Memorial—not an uncommon experience—and as she and her classmates were assembling for a group shot on the monument's steps, a sudden lesson in international relations arose. 

"As we were organizing the picture, a group of elite South Korean government officials who were visiting our Korean War Memorial, asked if they could join the picture," Kampf said.

Before the kids knew it, they were shoulder-to-shoulder with South Korean generals and National Assembly members Kim Young-woo, Seo Youngkyo and Yoon Kwan-seok, as well as their entourage.

"It was an amazing moment for my students—you can see that in their faces," Kampf said.

It may have cemented the visit in the students' minds forever—Nicole said the Lincoln Memorial was not only her favorite, but the first stop on any return visits.

"I definitely want to go back—even Mr. Kampf said this trip was just a tease," she said.

Hugh January 25, 2013 at 04:49 PM
Koreans always remember what our GI's did for their country. I've met many Koreans over the years- especially the older generation- who are grateful for the sacrifices of the "Forgotten War"- 1950-1953.

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