(Dayton, Wyo.) — Tongue River High School junior Ian Ostler is going to see world. This summer, he will join an elite group of American high school juniors in the Student Diplomacy Corps, and will spend a month in Chile. Ian was born in Sheridan and moved to Dayton when he was in first grade. His parents were high school sweethearts, he said, and his family is very active in the Bighorns. "Our family has been in the area for a long time," Ian said, adding that they have a ranch in Parkman, that they run the Bighorn Mountain Wild and Scenic Trail Runs and love the outdoors. And maybe it is his strong connection to this part of Wyoming that make him want to travel. Ian will be traveling this summer to Santiago, and then around Chile, as a part of the Student Diplomacy Corps
, an elite,
nationwide program that sends qualified high-schoolers to foreign countries
for immersion education.
Ian will be studying the culture in a month-long program called "Chile: How
to get to Easter Island – Anthropology and Rapa Nui Culture."
"The opportunity of being able to travel—I have just always been interested
in going different places and experiencing different things," Ian told
Dally on a recent sunny April morning outside Tongue River High School.
"We are so sheltered to what we know in Wyoming ... going out and
experiencing something, this is kind of a carpe diem moment," Ian said.
The application process was tough. Only 160 students from across the
country were accepted into the summer program, and applying was a
months-long undertaking that involved in-person interviews with the SDC
To raise funding for the trip, much of which is paid for by the SDC, Ian
and fellow TRHS juniors Kiley Carroll and Anya Wobig—the only students from
Wyoming who made it into the SDC—are fundraising and doing raffle sales.
The students have to raise around $2,000 each, and have donations from many
local businesses to raffle.
The students have received donations of raffle prizes from the Sheridan WYO
Rodeo, the Paint Post, MC Picture Company, Catering for a Cause, Ruby Rays,
Surf Wyoming and Jesse Messerle at Level 3 Salon.
To buy a ticket, donate or contact the students, message Dally
*Check Dally for a feature story on Kiley Carroll
an upcoming one on Anya Wobig.*