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AT students visit Italy during spring break

Published: Monday, April 28, 2014 12:15 p.m. CDT
(Photo provided)
Addison Trail students stand in front of Rome's Colosseum during a recent trip to Italy as part of the Addison-Triggiano Sister City student exchange program.
(Photo provided)
Addison Trail juniors Jonathan Nevarez (from left), Stephanie Diaz, Alexandra DiSilvio (back) and Annina Beltrano and senior Camden Knights enjoy a gondola ride in Venice during their recent trip to Italy.

ADDISON – Instead of sleeping in or enjoying a family vacation, a group of Addison Trail High School students took a Roman holiday during their spring break.

The 15 students traveled to Italy as part of the Addison-Triggiano Sister City student exchange program.

Students enrolled in Italian 3 honors, 4 honors or Advanced Placement (AP)/college-level classes were eligible to apply.

The application process included writing an essay and completing an interview in English and Italian. GPA, attendance, behavior and character/leadership also were taken into consideration.

Along with traveling to Italy, chosen students and families had to commit to hosting a student from Italy in October 2013. Addison Trail hosted students from Il Cartesio High School, according to a District 88 newsletter.

The first part of the spring trip included a five-day tour that featured visits to Venice, Florence and Rome. During the second half of the trip, Addison Trail students were hosted by students of Il Cartesio High School in Triggiano.

The Addison students attended school with their Italian-student hosts and also participated in day trips throughout the region of Puglia, the newsletter stated.

The Addison Sister City Committee partnered with District 88 to support this exchange program. The Addison-Triggiano Sister City agreement was signed in 2004.

The committee works to raise funds to help offset the costs of hosting Italian students and to provide scholarships for Addison Trail students to travel to Italy. The remaining costs for the trip were funded by the students and their families. Students also did fundraising throughout the year for the trip, according to the newsletter.

The Addison Sister City Committee is made up of volunteers, and it is always in need of new members. For information about the program, contact Marianne Fotopoulos with the village of Addison at

District 88 is organizing another trip for spring beak 2015 to Spain. This opportunity is afforded to students in the highest-level Spanish classes at Addison Trail and Willowbrook high schools.

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