Aric Kampschaefer, 13, has earned himself a trip to South America through a contest with National Geographic Kids magazine.
The magazine recently asked for students age 9-14 to write a 100-200 word essay displaying their passion for exploring, and submit an accompanying photograph.
Aric's mom, Cindy Kampschaefer, knew just the photo Aric needed to send in.
"I immediately thought of this very cool picture, or a whole series of pictures, that Aric and his sister had taken of the bear footprint," she said. "I thought, 'Well, that would be a really cool way to illustrate an adventurous spirit.'''
After going through a round of interviews, it was finally official: Out of 4,000 students, Aric was one of the 15 winners in the magazine's Hands-On Explorer Challenge.
Aric and his mother will travel to South Africa Aug. 6-15 with the other winners, two teachers and several National Geographic editors and hosts.
"I really think it's going to be interesting to see the animals," said Aric, a seventh grader at Deer Creek Middle School. "It's the amazing big animals that I'm interested in." "Krista Nightengale