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PENNSYLVANIA, June 8, 2024 — Today, America250PA together with America250, the official nonpartisan entity charged by Congress with planning the 250th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, announced that 11 Pennsylvania students were selected as inaugural “America’s Field Trip” awardees. America’s Field Trip is a nationwide scholastic contest encouraging students to reflect on what America means to them, with first-place awardees receiving special behind-the-scenes experiences at iconic American historical and cultural sites.

Thousands of students across the country sent in inspiring submissions responding to the prompt “What does America mean to you?” Out of those submissions, 75 were named first-place awardees, and 75 were selected as second-place awardees, receiving a $500 cash award.

The awardees from Pennsylvania include:

First Place

  • Lydia Z., Weatherly, 3rd Grade
  • Alyssa B., Oreland, 5th Grade
  • Alyssa Y., Yardley, 6th Grade
  • Margaret F., Chester, 8th Grade
  • Leila W., Cranberry Township, 9th Grade
  • Benjamin M., Pittsburgh, 12th Grade

Second Place

  • Caleb H., Dillsburg, Elementary School (Grades 3–5)
  • Aubrey C., Fogelsville, Elementary School (Grades 3–5)
  • Elizabeth S., Lewistown, Middle School (Grades 6–8)
  • Josiah K., Millersville, High School (Grades 9–12)
  • Wesley G., Lancaster, High School (Grades 9-12)

A full list of the 150 nationwide awardees and their submissions is available at

First-place awardees will participate in one of the following unique and unforgettable field trip experiences this summer:

  • Tour of the Statue of Liberty in New York
  • Tour and hike at Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming and Montana
  • Weekend at Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado
  • Unique tours at the National Archives and the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.
  • Special tours at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, National Museum of African American History and Culture, or the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.
  • Explore America’s iconic financial capital, New York City, with private tours of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York Museum and Learning Center and The Bank of New York, the country’s oldest bank
  • Experience National Parks of Boston with a special visit to the USS Constitution and a sunset cruise to Spectacle Island
  • Candlelight tour at Fort Point at the base of the Golden Gate Bridge
  • Costumed roleplaying experience at American Village in Alabama

“We are so proud of the 11 EPIC Pennsylvania students selected as America’s Field Trip awardees,” said Cassandra Coleman, Executive Director of America250PA. “Their inspiring submissions reflect the amazing talent and creativity all throughout the Commonwealth. We can’t wait to see and hear from even more Pennsylvania students as we lead up to the Semiquincentennial in 2026!”

“We’re thrilled to announce the first-ever America’s Field Trip awardees — 75 incredible students from across the country who will now embark on transformative field trip experiences where they’ll experience history outside of the classroom,” said America250 Chair, Rosie Rios. “We’re grateful for all of the students, teachers, and families who engaged around America’s Field Trip — one of the first big steps on our long journey together to the Semiquincentennial. As we advance towards July 4, 2026, America’s Field Trip will only get bigger, engaging thousands of students around our collective history and giving them a platform to actively participate in envisioning our future.”


Vincel B. Flasher 1950-2024

Vincel was a modest man who enjoyed music, playing guitar, watching westerns, football, and being in the great outdoors.

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