Kay is a Middle School Spanish World Cultures Teacher. She first traveled with EF to Costa Rica in 2009 and has been leading student groups every Summer since. Kay believes that students should experience travel to help broaden their perspectives and allow them to see firsthand how tolerant, global and open-minded we should all strive to become.
They say, “It is the little things in life that mean the most.” Why not use that to your advantage and do some small things that will add a big bang to your upcoming tour recruitment meeting? I have found that excitement is the key to generating student interest, so here are some things I do to create excitement at my own recruitment meetings:
via Kay Peterson Kaul
- Food – Nothing draws people’s attention like food, especially at a meeting! I like to find a local delicacy of the country we are visiting and offer a food sampling to my potential travelers. It gets them interested and hooks their attention for the meeting. Currently, I am organizing a trip for my school to travel to Peru. I was lucky enough to find some Inca Cola at the local Import market to serve at my meeting. If you are going to France, why not serve croissants? There are numerous possibilities, and every meeting is more fun when there is food.
- Dress the part – Clothing has always been a big part of the culture and travel experience. It is fun to incorporate some cultural clothing into your meeting, even if it something as simple as a hat. Going to Paris? Find a beret. Spain? I display soccer jerseys on the table during the meeting. These small things really resonate with students. It can also be fun to take pictures of people playing dress up for your travel bulletin board at school.
- Music – Find music from the country where you will be traveling and play it softly in the background as people enter your meeting. Pair the music with a slideshow of pictures from your destination for an even bigger bang!
- Reunion time! Invite former travelers to come back and speak at your meeting to share their experiences. If this is your first tour, seek out a parent or community member who has been to your destination country and invite them to speak. Having a personal connection at your meeting is priceless, and can bring the destination to life.
- Books – Use your school or local public library to check out some travel books of your destination country. Place them on tables or desks for travelers to look through during the meeting. Images can help drive interest and hopefully increase registrations.
These small steps can have a big impact at your next recruitment meeting. Have fun with it and make it memorable – the possibilities are limitless. Your potential travelers will appreciate your attention to detail. Sometimes, it really is the little things that mean the most.