Why We Went to Salem

All content is © Copyright 2012 McLean County Diversity Project

The reason, year in and year out, that we get so many applicants to the
Diversity Project is because they hear how every year we get something
new out of the Project, and that they might be able to be part of it.
This is my 6th and final year with the Diversity Project, six years of great
and new experiences that I will keep forever.
For me, this has meant having a new once in a lifetime experience every
year: meeting new and diverse people, helping to eliminate stereotypes,
leading our generation at school, sports, church and last, but definitely not
least, building a lifetime of friendships that are formed right here in the
Everything that I have learned thru the Project has helped me develop many
friendships that I know will last a very long time. It has helped me actually
get to know people and not just judge a book by its cover.
These experiences also have helped me earn all of my achievements and
accolades. They have helped me not only in the classroom, on the football
field and basketball court, but in my daily life as well.
In my opinion one of, if not the most important thing that the Project has
helped me with and will continue to help me with this summer in
Massachusetts, is that it is preparing me for college and when I get into the
real world.
There is so much diversity in this world and, because of the Project, I’m not
afraid of it.
Because of the Project I have the confidence in my actions and
Without a doubt my experiences have helped me become the person I am
So, there is one last trip that I get to go on. Why am I going? Why is the 
Project going?
The reason is simple: we will get something out of the trip.
In Boston, we will be where our founding fathers participated in events that
helped start this great country and learn what our country’s leaders were
trying to accomplish. In Salem, the site of the Salem Witch Trials, we will
learn why these trials matter today and the impact of stereotyping.
Both destinations are a once in a lifetime experience.
As our trip unfolds, we will open our minds and experience the sights,
sounds, and influence of the historic significance that surrounds us, sharing
the important history of this area with our friends.
There will be many opportunities to show leadership and demonstrate
One of these leadership opportunities will be aboard the replica of the 
1812 schooner, Fame Expedition,an experience in old-time sailing that
will be an exercise in teamwork. All of us will be outside our comfort zones
and will need to work together to learn what to do, when to do it and why, 
as we cast-off into the ocean.
We will also share how diversity played out historically and why it matters
today; through debates, discussions and interactions.
Our experiences will include religious differences, cultural influences,
and patriotic beginnings.
The reason we go on a trip every year is simple: it’s because we get
something valuable out of it:  outcomes that will affect us the rest of our lives.
For me, this trip sums up what we have been learning about the past six
- Travis Goveia, Senior Veteran Scholar
McLean County Diversity Project


McLean County Diversity Project   c/o Jeffrey A. Schwartz   16043 Dorado Road Bloomington, IL 61705