College group prepares for trip to Cuba

GRAND TRAVERSE COUNTY — A group of students and faculty from Northwestern Michigan College will be heading to Cuba at the end of this week, and they’ll be documenting their experience along the way.

Eagerness was in the air as the group had their final meeting Tuesday before they head out on their cultural exploration of Cuba.

They will be spending their spring break learning about Cuban culture.

“It’s a very special opportunity,” said Kaitlin Salmela, Visual Communications student at NMC.

Kaitlin is one of six Visual Communication students that are going on the trip to Cuba to document the culture, the sites and the people.

“We’re going to bring back a lot of good footage and hopefully a better understanding of what life is like down there and the culture and just how people live day-to-day,” said Kaitlin.

The group of about 15 is hoping to document every bit of their experience.

They’re bringing multiple cameras, video cameras, GoPros and microphones.

“We’re a small northern Michigan college and it’s really nice for these students to get a range of what’s out there in the world and what’s happening socially, economically, design-wise, politically and all the nations that we are involved with or not involved with,” said Caroline Schaefer-Hills, Visual Communications Program Coordinator at NMC.

The trip has been in the works for several months. As the days get down to single digits, the group gets more and more excited to go.

“This is on my bucket list to see Cuba,” said Krystn Madrine, Visual Communications student at NMC. “I’ve loved Cuban music, Cuban food, and Cuban literature for years, and so for me I’m going to soak it up.”

“We’re just hoping that we can reach people and open their eyes up about Cuba and hopefully maybe someone who watches our videos will be inspired to go down there and visit it for themselves,” said Kaitlin.

The group will be flying out of Detroit on Friday.

Their home base will be in Havana.

See video here.

By Allison Scott, Up North Live

March 24, 2015

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