Several Lausanne faculty took part in the Lausanne & Belize Collaboration this June, a life-changing experience for the co-workers. The members of the team had to submit a proposal for a workshop they would facilitate for local teachers while visiting the small Central American country. Robin Trusty, one of Lausanne's Middle School faculty that was selected to go on the trip, admits that she was not mentally prepared for the changes she was about to endure.
"Prior to this opportunity, I didn’t even have my passport and had never been out of the United States," Trusty said. "So, I thought it would be a valuable experience and should put in a proposal to try to go."
In addition to leading the workshops, the group participated in once in a lifetime events like climbing a Mayan Ruin, tubing through a cave, snorkeling with manatees and ziplining in the jungle.
When they first arrived at the Belize school, Trusty shared that her sympathy level was at its highest. She quickly learned, however, that the local teachers and students were happy and content. In a culture is very family-centered, Trusty said she learned it is not what you do or don't have but rather who you have in your life.
The Lausanne faculty observed the teachers and students and taught several lessons. Many said that the lessons learned were much greater than anything they could ever give.
"Lausanne is unique because the teachers truly care about the students, and this relationship is why they are successful in a global society. Students need to feel safe in having a place to improve themselves. Students must know their teacher is looking out for them to become the best version of themselves," Trusty said. "The Lausanne teachers work together to constantly improve themselves and their classrooms, and they do this work collaboratively."
The faculty that went to Belize now have connections with teachers in another country and plan on sharing their knowledge. At the same time, they will continue to learn from the Belizean people and from their experiences.