The two National Park Service sites in St. Louis are filled with exhibits, artifacts, and programs that tell important stories about our nation’s past – from the exploration of the American west to the lives of two U.S. presidents to the struggle for civil rights. The resources at these parks – Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site and Gateway Arch National Park – are available free to all visitors. But all too often, children from under-served communities aren’t able to take advantage of these experiences.
Now there’s a unique opportunity for middle school students to visit these sites this summer for a full week of specially-designed programs.
The Arch and U. S. Grant are offering free weeklong summer workshops at their sites for middle school students from African American communities. Daily transportation and lunch are included at no cost, as are normally fee-based experiences like the Arch tram ride and a Mississippi riverboat cruise.
The five-day workshops will be offered at both the Arch and at Grant during select weeks from June to August. Educators from both parks will lead the programs. Their aim is to familiarize students with under-told stories of Black Americans in St. Louis and throughout Missouri, including stories of slavery, resistance, and Reconstruction. The participants will learn by discovery instead of direct instruction, with guidance from park staff. Students will select a person or story they want to research, then will present their creative project on their chosen subject at the conclusion of the workshop.
If you are interested, now’s the time to apply! The parks are accepting applications for groups of approximately 15 students (ideally from schools or youth groups) through mid-April. Those interested in applying should contact Julie Northrip, Program Manager of Interpretation and Education at Ulysses S. Grant NHS by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 314-842-1867 ext. 223. Please list in order your preference for which week your youth can attend.
July 31-Aug 4
JNPA is proud to support this unique program by underwriting the cost of the student lunches.