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Mercer Island High School is expanding the trip offerings associated with senior Social Studies curriculum to include China. One of the 6 countries studied as part of Advanced Placement Comparative Government and the school’s International Studies courses, China is arguable the most important nation with which the United States will interact with in the 21st Century. This trip is an opportunity to gain firsthand knowledge and experience with China’s past, present, people, and culture. Travelers will leave on March 31st, at the start of Spring Break, and return on April 13th. Highlights include Beijing, The Great Wall, the Terra Cotta Warriors, a Panda Rescue center, and cruise to the Three Gorges Dam. Also built into the itinerary are many small activities aimed at experiencing China’s diverse people and environment, including time at a local school in Xi’an. Although we could not secure enough sign-ups for an April 2012 trip, running the trip over the summer for incoming Seniors is currently under consideration, possibly for June of 2012, but more likely for June 2013.