The American South: Spotlight on Social Justice

Video and Photos

girl with long red hair wearing pink shirt and jeans in a city
girl with long red hair wearing pink shirt and jeans in a city
kayaking in the american south
kayaking in the american south
NYT Student Journeys American South
NYT Student Journeys American South

About

Explore the American South, the birthplace of the civil rights movement, as you learn about issues and initiatives related to social justice with guidance from an expert from The New York Times. Begin this 16-day program in New Orleans, then continue to Alabama, the Mississippi Delta and Memphis to meet with people who have lived civil rights history and those carrying on the work of the movement’s pioneers.

Highlights
  • Visit the Southern Poverty Law Center and Equal Justice Initiative to meet with staff members to brainstorm solutions to mass incarceration, failures of due process and miscarriages of justice.
  • Investigate the origins of inequality and oppression and meet with people seeking solutions as you explore.
  • Dive deep into civil rights history and continuing struggles for equality as you explore the Lorraine Motel, where the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated, and the National Civil Rights Museum.
  • Learn how natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina often disproportionately impact low-income communities and can intensify existing social inequalities.

Questions & Answers

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Reliving Yesterday's History to Impact a Better Tomorrow

Through the learning moments and pure fun, traveling with New York Times Student Journeys was simply one of the best decisions of my life. While taking part in an overflow of compelling pursuits and in-depth discussions about the rooted complexities of the American South alongside my phenomenal new friends, every aspect of this trip allowed me to sharpen my perspective of America’s physique, and embrace my potent curiosity through knowledge I would not have attained within classroom walls. Walking the grounds of historic landmarks such as the Whitney Plantation and the National Civil Rights Museum, listening to the pivotal messages from Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion consultant Jabari Carmichael and poet-activist A Scribe Called Quess? and taking in the heavy auras of the Legacy Museum and the National Memorial for Peace and Justice all taught me plenty in more ways than any textbook ever could. Particularly participating in a slavery reenactment at By the River Center for Humanity and later standing on the Edmund Pettus Bridge just a few blocks farther in Selma, Alabama were my most powerful and heart-grabbing experiences that I am simply grateful to have had. The intensely deep connection I shared with African American culture— my culture— was truly surreal, and will forever make me cry, laugh and reminisce everything in between as I continue to do my part in making change.