USI Alumni Association travels to Scotland

Ariana Beedie

Each year, USI Alumni and Volunteer Services  hosts a summer trip for students, alumni and children. Next summer they’re traveling to Scotland.

The  Alumni and Volunteer Services offers a space on the trip to anyone who wants to travel to Scotland for 10 days.

“We picked Scotland because we hadn’t been there before,” Janet Johnson said. “We already have seven signed up, and we’re adding more all the time.”

Johnson, Alumni and Volunteer Services director, said the association has been taking trips each summer since 2009.

“The alumni trips are an opportunity for alumni and friends to experience the world,” she said. “I will go, and my husband is also going.”

Participants travel for ten days on an all inclusive trip around the country. The trip includes tours of cities like Edinburgh and Glasglow.

It’s best to make reservations by Feb. 1, she said.

The Alumni Association scheduled this trip for luxury, but also to make local connections.

During the trip there’s a tour of New Lanark, which is a utopia similar to New Harmony. Both colonies involved Robert Owen, a man focused on bettering society and education.

Robert Owen created a utopian society in New Lanark, and heard there was a town for sale called New Harmony and bought it, said Connie Weinzapfel, Historic New Harmony director.

“He thought it would be fantastic to try his social experiments there,” Weinzapfel said.

Weinzapfel, also works on a bicentennial committee to celebrate the founding of New Harmony.

The idea of New Harmony, like New Lanark, is that giving everyone equal access to education will improve society, she said.

“I think it’s still an important idea,” she said. “People improving their lives through education.”

Improving the mind is what USI is all about, she said.