Art & Design Take on New York!

Visual & Performing Arts

Our Art & Design learning area took a massive group of 47 keen students to New York from Monday 22 February to Saturday 27 February: here's a full breakdown of what they got up to!

Day one – Monday 22 February

It was an early start for our students as they made their way to Itchen to meet a 5:30AM coach to Heathrow. After a long seven hour flight and setting their watches back five hours, students exited the airport into sunny New York!

Once they arrived at the hotel, the group had an hour and a half to unpack before taking on Times Square and getting their first taste of life in New York.

Day two – Tuesday 23 February

Our students got to see New York in the daytime as they headed to Central Park. Although the weather wasn't as sunny as yesterday, they were still content to see the lovely grounds of the park before heading to the Museum of Modern Art, also known as MoMA.

Kate Gamblin said, 'My dream job is to work at MoMA so it was an inspirational place to visit.'

The students spent over three hours in MoMA taking in the fantastic artwork before heading to the planned Empire State visit, only to be turned away due to poor visibility at the top of the 86th floor viewing deck. The Empire State visit was quickly rescheduled to Thursday and the students spent the evening exploring more of the city.

Day three – Wednesday 24 February

The students had the chance to view the stunning Grand Central Station as they took the subway to the Guggenheim museum in uptown Manhattan. An hour was plenty to explore the quirky museum. The visit was wrapped up quickly as the group had to take the subway downtown to catch their ferry to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Once again the New York weather wasn't good, with heavy rain and choppy winds providing a very shaky boat ride! Nevertheless, the students had the chance to see the amazing sights of the Statue of Liberty and the Ellis Island museum, showing the history of American immigration, even if the famous Manhattan skyline was lost in mist and cloud cover. 

Looking back at visiting the Statue of Liberty, Beth Hayward commented, 'It was something you might never see again, it was amazing.'

Day four – Thursday 25 February

Many students were looking forward to visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art, one of the biggest art museums in the city. Although the students didn't get as long at the Met as they did at MoMA, they found plenty to keep them occupied with exhibits ranging from the ancient Egyptians to gilded American furniture!

After the fantastic sights of the Met and a quick group photo, the students and staff headed back on the subway to reach the 9/11 Memorial Museum. Although the students were too young to remember the events of 9/11, visiting the museum gave them lots to consider about the significance of the terrorist attacks. 

The museum was a moving experience for the students and Amelia Butler said, 'The museum was so sad but fascinating to see.'

Following the sombre visit and with much clearer weather, the students made their way back to the hotel and ventured back out an hour later to visit the Empire State Building. The views were stunning in the night skyline. However, ferocious winds on the 86th floor observation deck meant students were clasping their phones, bags and cameras tightly!

Day five – Friday 26 February

On the final morning of their New York visit, the group were given the morning to go shopping and buy presents for family members and friends. After bringing their packed luggage to a staff member's room, they headed back out into New York City for the final time.

Before 2PM, the whole group boarded the coaches back to Newark Airport and eventually boarded their six hour flight back home.

Day six – Saturday 27 February

The group arrived in the UK at 6.20AM British time and boarded an early coach home, reaching Southampton by 9.30AM to meet their families, go home and catch up on well needed sleep!

Thinking about the trip as a whole, the students said it was 'amazing', 'a lifetime experience' and they 'managed to do so much!' during their time in New York City. The annual trip to New York was a fantastic opportunity for our students and we look forward to running it for future college students.