National Geographic Announces Student Expedition Photo Contest Winners

National Geographic Photo Contest runner-upNational Geographic has announced the winners of their second annual Student Expedition Photo Contest, selecting the best images from more than 2,500 entries submitted by high school students from across the country. Those amateur photographers were asked to share their photos that best convey a sense of adventure and exploration, along with a short descriptive caption explaining the image. The entries were then examined by a board of Nat Geo photographers and photo editors who judged them on the overall quality of the photography, the quality of the included caption and the extent to which the image captured the heart of student expedition.

The winner of this year’s contest was 17-year-old Lijah Hanley, whose beautiful image entitled “No Boundaries” can be seen below. He snapped the photo while on a family drive to Dallas, OR, where they were planning a picnic under the stars. Lijah, who finished second in last year’s contest, has earned himself an all expense paid trip to attend a 12-day photography workshop to be held in London later this year.

The second place photo, entitled “Anticipation,” was taken by 16-year-old Julianna Brown and can be seen above. That image earned her a $250 gift card for the Nat Geo store. Third place went to Emily Watson, 18, who received a $100 gift card.

All of the winners, along with the other finalists, can be viewed by clicking here. Judging by the images that are on display there, I’d say there are some very talented photographers in this group.

National Geographic Student Photo Contest Winner by Lijah Hanley

National Geographic offers new Student Expeditions for 2012

National Geographic Student Expeditions for 2012High school students looking for something to occupy their time next summer, just received a host of tantalizing new options courtesy of National Geographic. Earlier this week, the organization announced several new trips as part of their Student Expeditions program, which provide young people with the opportunity to experiencing some of the world’s top destinations, while learning about new cultures, building new skills, and making a difference in the community there.

Nat Geo’s student programs come in three different varieties: expeditions, field workshops, and community service trips. The expeditions are two to three weeks in length and focus on exploring the cultures and landscapes of the destination in a very in depth way. Field workshops, on the other hand, are shorter, usually 11-12 days, and offer students the opportunity to stay in a more central location, while taking part in daily active excursions into the surrounding area. The community service programs take place in a local community, with the participants spending roughly 30-40 hours, over a 14-15 day period, on a service project there.

Some of the new options that fall under the Student Expeditions umbrella for 2012 include community service projects in Tanzania, Peru, and Cambodia, as well as field workshops in Sicily, Buenos Aires and the Grand Canyon. Additionally, aspiring photographers will want to sign up for a new photography workshop to be held in London and led by one of National Geographic’s top photographers. These new options join a host of existing trips that can take aspiring explorers to Alaska, New Zealand, the Galapagos Islands, and beyond. To review all of the opportunities, click here.

The National Geographic Student Expeditions are a fantastic way for high school students to not only explore the world, but also get amazing insights into these destinations that you can’t find elsewhere. As you would expect, the trips are always led by very knowledgeable guides, and a Nat Geo expert joins the students for at least a portion of the trip as well. For example, on the Tanzania Expedition, the travelers are joined by wildlife photographer Pete McBride, while those on the Galapagos trip get to spend time with biologist and filmmaker Greg Marshall. The other options all offer similar experiences, which are simply invaluable to impressionable young people who are eager to learn about our planet.

Interested students or parents can learn more about the expeditions and how to apply by clicking here.

[Photo Credit: Erika Skogg]