High Mountain Institute GAP Year

Latin America, United States


HMI’s Gap Semesters unite outdoor adventure, environmental service, and leadership development on an uninterrupted journey to some of the world’s most awe-inspiring places. Our students realize their full potential to thrive as engaged citizens of the world by exploring with intention. 

Since 1998, HMI has offered empowering experiences in inspiring surroundings, boldly uniting place-based and hands-on learning with the natural world. For two decades, this foundation has enabled us to create a meaningful impact that transcends the boundaries of our campus. Students return from HMI transformed, carrying with them the confidence, passion, and readiness to excel in college, graduate school, and beyond. Our alumni stand out in the increasingly competitive environment, as colleges and employers view HMI alumni as risk-takers in the best sense who have the skills to work effectively on a team and emerge as leaders in their community. 

HMI Gap’s unique integration of outdoor education, environmental studies, and service presents rich opportunities to gain important life and professional skills. Outdoor rock climbing and wilderness travel offer a powerful venue to confront physical, emotional, and intellectual challenges with focus, creativity, and resolve. Students must interact with the natural environment and think critically about their own impact. Finally, they must work closely with others to evaluate risk and achieve goals, developing important judgment and decision-making skills along the way. Through our authentic service opportunities, students develop an understanding and awareness of their impact on the environment while working to affect positive change, pushing them to become more scientifically literate, environmentally aware, and civically involved.

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High Mountain Institute GAP Semester

Leadville, CO  -   School
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The HMI Semester is an academic and wilderness semester school for motivated college-bound juniors. HMI is akin to a college study abroad program, but for ... (more)
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