By: Bella Hunt
The Earth has many beautiful sights – many worth seeing. At Jenks, we offer a program called JMS Global for incoming 8th graders to experience said sights. Global was created to give students a sense of awareness of different cultures and learn about a country and its history. You then get to travel to the country to experience it with your class. Global provides an atmosphere for kids to explore the country as a whole and provide a perspective worth learning about.
“JMS Global is a year-long elective course where we study a new country every year. We study its culture, its history, and my class studies the arts and humanities,” says Morgan Brown, an art teacher at Jenks Middle School who is also one of the teachers for the JMS Global program.
There are two classes for JMS Global. Arts and Humanities is a course where students study a new country’s culture, history, and art every year, and it is taught by Brown.
Science and Agriculture, taught by Jenks High School Agricultural Education teacher Stephen Tillinghast, is essentially a social studies class with an emphasis on the importance of science and agriculture.
JMS Global strives to pick the best students for the program – they want students who have the leadership goals and the drive to work hard. JMS Global lets you decide which class you would like to apply for; Arts and Humanities or Science and Agriculture. They usually put you in your first choice class but sometimes they have students they feel would be a better fit in the class they didn’t choose.
“We are looking for good work ethic, a good attitude, and work well with peers,” said Brown.
Global is intended for students who work hard and are excited to learn and experience the countries. That is why both global classes help students who want to further their studies in high school. The Arts and Humanities class offers a wide aspect in the class that can help students excel in the film program at the high school. On top of this, Science and Agriculture feed into FFA. Last year’s Global class are now at the high school without the experience of seeing the country they studied for a year.
COVID has impacted the program greatly and has set back many things that they would do in the year; last year took a significant toll on their fundraising. JMS Global completes a set of fundraisers to help the kids that need financial support to be in the program.
“Our goal and what we are trying to do is provide scholarships funds for students who have the academic capacity and are the right fit for the program but maybe can’t financially afford it,” said Brown.
Global is always looking for a way to help the students and fundraising has helped significantly. Fundraising is one of the biggest priorities for Global due to the trip being expensive for students. Without fundraising, some students may not be able to travel. JMS Global wants the students to be in the program and they strive to help their students accomplish just that.
“I wanted to be in JMS Global because I really liked the idea of traveling and I wanted to learn about a different country’s culture,” says freshman Karter Larsen, 9.
Karter was a part of the Arts and Humanities class in JMS Global last year. COVID-19 was at its peak and sadly that was the year that JMS Global would have gone to Japan. Karter had explained the Japan trip was continuously being postponed throughout the year.
“I have never traveled internationally before and I have always wanted to and I have always wanted the experience of going somewhere different,” said Ava Carlson, 9.
Ava is excited to experience Japan and step out into the world and was also in the Japan Global Group. Finally, the date is set for June 2022. Even though JMS Global was disrupted by COVID-19, they made the most of the situation and took the opportunity to go into further depth of Japan with the students.
“We got to spend that entire year pretty much talking about Japan and they had gotten a really heavy dose of everything that Japan has to offer and probably even more detail than other classes get,” said Tillinghast. “My favorite thing to do in class, I really liked when we would do different art projects,” said Ava Carlson, 9.
This gave students a more clear understanding of Japan and now they are ready to further their learning on their trip!
“I just want to try and create some sense of normalcy. If I can help these students return some sense of normalcy, like, ‘you worked really hard for this, here’s your reward’, that’s all I want,” said Brown.
Now, JMS Global is gathering for the new year and their new classes. They plan on going to Germany and we can’t wait to see all the adventures they have! Shortly after, they will be traveling to Japan for their summer trip as well. JMS Global is truly an amazing program – it gives kids a chance to experience the world as well as a new culture. This opportunity is without a doubt one of the most impactful opportunities these young adults will have. The program can impact your life in such a positive way. It can truly give you a wide spread of knowledge and build on your relationships with other students. It is truly an unforgettable experience.