The Ripon High School Band and Choir traveled to the People’s Republic of China and performed in the American Celebration of Music concert series. Their tour consisted of many life-changing experiences and opportunities to immerse themselves in the local culture. Read what directors, Sandra Polcyn and Rachel Zarzyski , report about their experience:

“We were pleased with our MCI team from day one. They went out of their way at the start of planning this trip to help us promote how great of an opportunity this would be for our students. They met with us via Skype several times before the trip was set in stone to talk to families that were interested in the potential of the trip, to correct some misconceptions, and to answer any questions the students had. This support was vital to the success of the tour.

Tour highlights include being welcomed with open arms at our sister school in Nanjing, and being immersed in the school and Chinese culture. The students and the staff made the Ripon students and staff feel very appreciated. Our students had a time of sharing their life in Ripon and America as well as learning various customs and cultural traditions from their Chinese peers. It was a day full of collaboration and we were able to communicate through our common interest – music. This day reminded me why I went into teaching music in the first place! We thought nothing could top this day, but when we arrived at the Hangzhou School of the Arts, our students were once again taken into a true cultural experience, which will stay with them for a lifetime. The shared performance in Hangzhou was an incredible experience, and a great way to end our tour!

Thank you for taking so much time to plan every detail of our trip to make it an experience to remember for a lifetime!”

Sandra Polcyn, Band Director
Rachel Zarzyski, Choir Director
Ripon High School