It seems that there are not many activities in life as universally enjoyable as traveling. Think about it – students want to travel after graduation; favorite destinations are often listed in one’s obituary; you can even keep track of your travels on websites sites such as Facebook, TripAdvisor, and more. For many people, traveling the world for business or pleasure is a big part of life.
I have often been asked why the USU Alumni Association sponsors a travel program. Although there are many reasons, here are my top four:
Bringing Aggies together through a common experience
Spending a week or more together with fellow travelers, alumni cannot help but find common bonds. Traveling Aggies will often find connections with one another (“Hey, your sister was my college roommate!” or “Do you remember Dr. Welti’s class?”). I have seen several occasions where new friendships are created and these new friends continue to travel or socialize together years after the tour. Believe it or not, there was an instance a few years back when two ladies realized on a trip that they had attended Utah State together, but they had not seen each other for decades. Amazing things happen when Aggies get together.
Let us do the planning
Although you may be an experienced and intrepid traveler, sometimes there are countries or places you want to visit but would rather have someone else take care of the details. I once traveled with an Aggie who was fiercely independent in his previous travels. He wasn’t sure how he would like the group experience, and he especially did not like the idea of visiting sites on a bus with a group. Well, by the end of the week-long tour visiting Civil War battlefields on the East Coast, he was hooked and has continued to travel with the Aggies. We take care of the details so you can relax and enjoy the experience.
Continuing your education
One of my favorite travel-related quotes comes from St. Augustine. He said, “The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page.” Just as you would not read one page of a book and profess to know its entire contents, we cannot truly know about the world by never experiencing its many offerings. By continuing to learn about other people, cultures, and countries, we expand our world view and become better citizens. Even if you do not have the time, resources or interest to travel internationally, there are many places to visit in our own country. We keep in mind the domestic, as well as the international traveler, when we design our annual travel programs. You might say we try to offer something for everyone.
Support for the Alumni Association
Yes, by traveling with the USU Alumni Association, you are helping to support our programs. Our mission is to engage you, our alumni, with Utah State University and with each other. When you support our programs, it demonstrates that we are accomplishing our mission and we are able to continue to grow and offer more and more. See how this works? You support us and we support you. A real win-win relationship.
We strive to offer a variety of destinations and prices in our annual travel programs. Coming up in 2013, we will be offering a tour to the Galapagos Island, European Tapestry cruise, a River Boat Cruise along the Mississippi, and more. I invite you to come along on a journey with your Alumni Association. Our complete travel schedule is available at www.usu.edu/alumni/travel, but if you have suggestions on destinations or types of trips you would like us to offer please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Happy Travels!