Each spring, from 1935-1951, excluding the years of World War II when the trips were suspended, Lucy Sprague Mitchell led the entire class of approximately 25 to 35 student teachers, all traveling together by bus over a thousand miles, to areas of the country dramatically different from New York City.

These week to ten-day trips placed the student teachers in a position to confront directly social and political issues of their day—the labor movement, poverty, conservation, government intervention programs, race relations—all the while considering the lives of children and their families, and the educational implications of what they experienced.