Academic Magnet High School - North Charleston, South Carolina.


Academic Magnet High School - North Charleston, South Carolina.


Academic Magnet High School - North Charleston, South Carolina.


This Year’s North Carolina College Trip

Some Academic Magnet students had the opportunity to take a college trip to tour numerous schools around North Carolina, read all about it!

Over Martin Luther King Day weekend, Academic Magnet Students went on our now annually college tour trip. Despite the fact that I forgot it was happening until the night before we left, I had a great time. However, I might have to pay the price as I had to miss two days of work because I am required to update my schedule at least two weeks in advance, and I believed that the trip wasn’t until February, as it was last year, and I thought I had more time to procrastinate sending in my unavailability to my manager. Sorry Hailie. With these college tour trips, a group of students chaperoned by Principal Perlmutter, go on student-led tours of their respective campuses over a select weekend missing that Friday, visiting 2 per day over the course of the 3 day trip. Last year however, we had students from all across Charleston County School District on our trip, most notably West Ashley High School and James Island Charter High School. It was enjoyable to get to know other students from our city that we would have most likely never have met had we not attended the trip. 

We typically begin our trips by visiting a college in our nearby vicinity, typically the College of Charleston. On last year’s trip to Atlanta, Georgia, after visiting the College of Charleston, we drove to Orangebug, South Carolina and visited Claflin University. While there we were able to meet a current student in addition to our student tour guides. A senior on the trip last year, the infamous Grayson Gregg, had his sister come and speak to us about her time at Claflin. Grayson is a current Wofford Football player, majoring in Biology. Proud of you buddy. After our tour of Clafin had concluded, we headed down south, traveling for roughly 4 hours to a hotel where we spent the night in Atlanta. We had fine dining on this trip as we visited a Golden Corral that night. I love the sugar donuts. 

I had the opportunity to burn off the calories consumed the night before as each day is packed with walking, where we had our 2 hour tour of the expansive campus of Emory University, my favorite of the Universities we have visited over this series of trips. This trip inspired me to further research the university following the conclusion of the trip. I am currently awaiting an admissions decision. Hopefully this article reaches the admissions team and makes known my true desire to attend Emory in this coming fall. Upon visiting, we learned of a trend found among the college’s we have visited, especially at Emory University, that on the weekends college students tend to remain asleep until about 12pm, leaving rather quiet and desolate campuses which can make getting a general feel for the student atmospheres rather difficult. Next on our list of colleges to visit was Georgia Institute of Technology (commonly known as Georgia Tech). This beautiful campus was overshadowed by the fact that it had so many stairs. I enjoy exercising but that experience was not one to write home about. However, like I previously mentioned the campus was otherwise amazing and the temperament of all the students and faculty was pleasing to see. I would definitely have applied to this distinguished institution if I had even the most faint of computer science skills. That night we spent some time and a meal at Dave and Busters. The catering was subpar. The strawberry lemonade was not, however. 

The following morning we suited up and braved the wind as we visited Morehouse and Spellman respectively. Given that it was Sunday at 8am, we did not have tour guides. However, it was exciting to see the former stomping grounds of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and other notable black alumni. The long drive back up to Columbia was the best sleep I have ever had. Y’all already know about USC, need I say more.

This year’s trip again started at the College of Charleston where we had the opportunity to catch up with Priceless, a senior at Academic Magnet last year who had accompanied us on our trip to Georgia. She spoke about her first semester at The College, and the unexpected experiences we might face during our freshman year. Thank you, Priceless.

Following our tour of downtown Charleston, we drove up to North Carolina State, about a four hour bus ride to Raleigh. The campus was large and very modern, seen as it hosts 35,000 students each year. For this visit we did not have a tour guide, however we were able to see all the hallmarks of the campus, namely the graffiti tunnel (I forget its actual name). This unique presence on a university campus provides students with an area to express themselves artistically. This modern campus’ most appealing building was its athletic center that stands over four stories tall and has floor to ceiling windows at every level. It appeared to be very expensive and took a long time to build.

Our Friday night concluded with a fun night of games and food courtesy of Dave and Busters. Again the Macaroni and Cheese was mediocre, but overall, we all had a great time setting the high score for the Kung Foo Panda game.


Saturday morning held another two hour tour of the prestigious Duke University located in Durham. While the surrounding neighborhoods of Durham were not very appealing, the scenic and expansive campus (so large that Vishwa did not want to wake up and walk to come see us because we were touring west campus while he resides on East Campus) was a delight. Once again, given the early nature and the fact that it was a Saturday we did not see too many students and had a difficult time truly seeing the student population interact with each other. At the end of our tour we had a former student at Academic Magnet who is currently a freshman at Duke speak to us. Spence Cox told of the ups and downs, perks and drawbacks he experienced attending Duke University during his first semester on campus.

We quickly shot over to Chapel Hill where we viewed the most notable university of North Carolina, UNC Chapel Hill. This was probably the favorite of most of the students on the trip as there was a home basketball game vs. Syracuse finishing just as our tour had begun. It was enjoyable to see all the school spirit from all the alumni, current students and general fans. It truly was a pull factor that would tilt the scales in UNC’s favor between them and another school of equal academic rigor. On our way back to our bus, we ran into more former Academic Magnet students who were watching the basketball game, Walker Bauknight, a current freshman at UNC and Emma Morrison, a current freshman at the University of Georgia. That night we visited Frankie’s Fun Park. This one has three whole go-kart tracks, a roller coaster, a swinging pendulum ride, batting cages and mini golf. Once again, the Mac and Cheese was extremely disappointing. “I still ate it though.” -Isaac Chery

The last day of our trip consisted of a trip down to Elon University. They had one of the nicest college campuses I have ever been to. The campus was so beautiful I believed there had to be money laundering going on (they do not have a large population and the tuition is not as high as most colleges are). They have an extremely generous alumni network that have connections with large corporations that partner with the university to provide their students with a beautiful campus and strong programs. If I had not already completed the college application process, this trip would have definitely made me apply to Elon University.

We proceeded to drive for two hours down to Columbia, SC and toured the University of South Carolina. This will be my likely destination for college so it was nice to visit the campus once again. I attempted to grab some school merchandise to show my Gamecock pride, but the school store had closed by the time our tour had finished. I was rather disappointed, but I will probably be back up there in the near future. Once again, we had a successful and enjoyable college trip. Thank you to all the chaperones and tour guides that made this trip possible and memorable. 


Current sophomore at Academic Magnet, Zuriel Nyamutsaka was interviewed regarding his experience on the trip. He stated that Elon University was definitely his favorite of the schools we had the opportunity to visit, closely followed by Duke University. Elon ultimately had the media and journalism classes that interested Zuriel. When asked about the campus he liked the most, he stated that Duke won his award for best campus by a far margin. Their campus definitely felt the safest, had the most amenities, and looked the most beautiful, according to the young raptor. Zuriel felt that UNC Chapel Hill had the best atmosphere, as we happened to tour the school the day of a UNC basketball game so we got to see all the fans and their jerseys walking around campus and he said it felt great.

“Duke’s tour guide was pretty immersive (and pretty bad)”

— Zuriel Nyamutsaka

When asked what schools had the best and most enthusiastic tour guides Zuriel Nyamutsaka responded, “Duke’s tour guide was pretty immersive (and pretty bad)”, as she loved her school and was eager to explain things about UNC which he believed to be “indicative of the atmosphere of the school as a whole”.


He also stated that “The trip was pretty baller. There was a lot of fun sprinkled in between the academic stuff and even the campuses were fun to walk around and observe. The bus rides were the longest part but even those felt fun with the kind of people we had on the trip”. When asked Why would he recommend a student go next year if given the opportunity, he answered, definitely “go for the amusement parks as well as just planting a foot in the ground when it comes to deciding where you might even consider going. Seeing is believing so it’s important to get a firsthand view of the schools you’re interested in, or find new schools that may interest you. Discovering Elon was definitely a highlight for me.”


The next student (and last student because no one responded to my emails) Zachary Butler, a current junior at Academic Magnet was interviewed about the events of this years college trip. 

What was your favorite school of the ones we visited, and why did you like it so much? 

Duke was my favorite because of their campus and they just gave me the right vibe. I could envision myself on campus.

Which school has the best campus?

Duke has the best campus out of the six schools we visited. Their cobblestone architecture contrasted with their more modern dining hall, which was nice. As well as the unique mix of forest with the city was pretty cool.

What school had the best student atmosphere?

I would have to go with NC State because many students were doing things when we visited. Many talked to us and gave us their opinion but that may have also been because we went on a Friday afternoon there compared to the other schools during the weekend.

Which school had the best tour guides?

I would go with the UofSC because there were so many of them. They gave us a bunch of perspectives and I could tell that they enjoyed going to the school and kept it real.

How did you enjoy the trip?

I thought the trip was super fun and insightful, especially as a junior needing to look into colleges more for this fall. Also, everyone there made it super fun.

Why would you recommend a student go next year if given the opportunity? 

I definitely would recommend a student go next year because it’s a great opportunity to learn about schools. Additionally, it is a great way to bond with your friends and make new ones.


Once again, we had a successful and enjoyable college trip. Thank you to all the chaperones and tour guides that made this trip possible and memorable. If you have the opportunity to go next year, I would strongly recommend that you attend. 

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