Delayed payment causes cancellation of trips


On Mar. 24, 2018, National Art Honors Society members visited the Chihuly Garden and Glass art museum while in Seattle Washington. Above the students sits multiple colorful glass sculptures, made by Dale Chihuly, with lights shining through them. Photo courtesy of Christina Witulski

Dominick Bartels, News Writer

North High’s Art Club and National Art Honors Society have planned for various trips over the past few years. However, an issue in booking the 2018 National Art Educators Association Conference (NAEAC) in Seattle led to higher than expected prices that carved drastically into the club’s fundraising money.

This loss in funds led to the cancellation of two future trips, one to Boston and the other to Denver. Misspelled names on the airline tickets also came with an additional fee. Instead of booking the tickets through the airline, OPS went through AAA Travel, which also added a fee to the price of the tickets.

“Because of the bureaucracy of OPS, the tickets cost double what they could have [if I booked them],” Anderson said.

Art Club absorbed the extra fees, allowing students to go on the trip, despite the price hikes.

According to Cherrese Ashby, treasurer at North High, the bill for the Seattle trip never reached her office to be paid. It was not until “months after the fact,” that the invoice was received from OPS and paid.

However, since the money was not taken out, Anderson continued to spend the funds, “thinking the bill ways paid.”

This lapse in funding caused the 2019 Boston NAEAC trip to be cancelled.

According to Elisa Soto, first year Art Club President, students had been fundraising for this trip “all summer.”

“As my first year as president, I feel like spending time with my club members is expected of me,” Soto said, adding,

“This situation made it impossible to do so. I feel like I let my club down.”

Art Club began planning for a less expensive trip to Denver where they would have stayed in a “art themed hotel and art museums in the area,” but the club still lacked funds causing that trip to be cancelled, too.

“This situation is frustrating because I just want to take kids [on trips] who can’t necessarily afford those expensive D.C. trips,” Anderson said.

To recover the lost funds, Art Club will be selling their art work at parent teacher conferences this month.

In the meantime, Art Club is planning a much less expensive alternative to the Boston and Denver trips where students will “take a long weekend” in Downtown Omaha, spending a couple nights in a hotel and visiting various art museums and shops.

According to Soto, Students who attend will be working with local artists and have the opportunity to “explore the Omaha art scene.”