Ticket to Ride Grant Awarded to Eisenhower Site and City of York Schools

McKinley Elementary students participating in the Molding of a Leader program at Eisenhower NHS.
McKinley Elementary students participating in the Molding of a Leader program at Eisenhower NHS.

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News Release Date: April 29, 2015

Contact: John Joyce, 717-338-9114 Ext. 4415

Thanks to a generous “Ticket to Ride” grant from the National Park Foundation and Disney, students from the City of York (Pa.) School District will have an opportunity to visit the Eisenhower National Historic Site this spring. The grant awarded to the Eisenhower Site will pay expenses for fifth grade students to travel to President Eisenhower's farm and participate in the site's curriculum-based, character education program, "The Molding of a Leader."

Students will have the opportunity to tour the President’s home and farm while role playing different periods in Eisenhower’s life when he learned or exhibited good character. Students don different Eisenhower hats and portray Ike as an Abilene High School student, West Point cadet, a captain in Gettysburg, supreme commander, president, farmer, and golfer.

To prepare students for the visit, teachers will introduce them to Eisenhower in the classroom. They will examine the traits that molded “Ike” into such an effective leader and learn to “Get On the Right TRRACC Like Ike,” discussing what it means to be Trustworthy, Respectful, Responsible, Accountable, Caring, and a good Citizen.

This past fall, York eighth grade students also visited the Eisenhower Site to participate in Agricultural Science field studies on Soil and Water. Students learned about Eisenhower's conservation ethic to leave the land better than he found it. At the site, students engaged in hands-on science amid the farm's cropland and wetlands. Students conducted a field study to analyze soil samples and investigate how farmers effectively manage croplands. They learned about the water cycle and watersheds, and conducted a stream study including chemical analysis and invertebrate census.   

“The Ticket to Ride program has been rewarding for both students and Eisenhower NHS staff,” noted acting Supervisory Park Ranger John Joyce. “The students are excited to examine crayfish from a creek bed, to see a hawk on a fence post, to get close to a herd of cows and their new born calves, and to have the opportunity to walk through the home of an actual president. For most, it’s their first visit to a national park. For the staff, it’s gratifying to be able to introduce them to these new experiences.”

“We have several donors to thank for assisting with the program,” said Joyce. “Due to decreasing school district budgets, these students would not have had the opportunity to enjoy such a hands-on, place based learning experience were it not for their generosity.”

In addition to the funds provided by the National Park Foundation and Disney, other donors supporting these field trips include the Dwight D. Eisenhower Society, the Gettysburg Foundation, and the LCBC Community Church of York, Pennsylvania.

For more information contact the Eisenhower National Historic Site at 717/ 338-9114 or visit the web site at www.nps.gov/eise

Last updated: May 10, 2015

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