Study environmental conservation and leadership all within the experiential wonderland of Australia, New Zealand, and Fiji.
In New Zealand, Students will experience indigenous Māori culture while living on a marae (community grounds). Learn about local environmental and social activism movements specific to indigenous rights, hiking the famed Abel Tasman, living on an organic farm, and learning about sustainability and regenerative practices.
In Fiji, get SCUBA certified in the colorful waters off the coast of Savusavu. Experience Fijian culture in a remote village homestay, working alongside locals on community projects.
In Australia, work alongside accomplished scientists in the largest continuous rainforest in Australia, learning about environmental conservation and habitat restoration. Spend a few days in a spiritual retreat, reflecting on what you have learned and preparing for your journey home.
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My time with Carpe in the South Pacific was nothing short of magical and amazing! We had several placements, teaching us about sustainability and culture, each fueling my passion of environmental justice. My favorite placements were the Hart farm and Sheoak Ridge. The Hart farm taught me so much about sustainable agriculture, mindful eating, and the true power of love. Sheoak Ridge was a nature reserve in Australia, where I learned what it means to have a true allyship with the land you live on and the indigenous people who it was stolen from, while having the perk of hanging out with wallabies! My time with Carpe was deeply transformative and I feel like I have a much better grasp on what my future can be. I recommend this program for anyone with an open mind, an urge to learn and a willingness to grow.
I come from a town in Colorado where taking a gap year has never really been heard of. I remember sitting through classes during my junior year of high school thinking about how much I didn't want to go to college but had no idea on how to justify that to my family. Then, I found Carpe Diem. I cannot even begin to explain how profoundly this past semester has impacted my life. I have had some of the most impactful experiences this semester--like in our remote Fijian village, at our yoga/meditation retreat in Australia, and in the Great Barrier Reef. I went into this program with uncertainty, fear, and loss of direction; I have left Carpe as a completely changed individual. I have gained so many new values I now carry into my day-to-day life. I feel exceptionally confident in my abilities as a solo traveler. I have made friends on this program that I still talk to everyday. If you are looking for an exceptional gap year program that will seriously challenge the way you think about the world (and life, for that matter), Carpe Diem is it.
Woooow. A three month era I will truly treasure for the rest of my life! I met some truly inspiring people on this trip, both within the group and with our hosts, guides, newfound friends, and acquaintances throughout the semester. After sharing ups (the otherworldly Outback stars, scuba diving in the vibrant reefs of Fiji, hiking through the astounding hills of the Abel Tasman in New Zealand), downs (travel days), stories, and most prominently, laughs, our group became a family. Our leaders were fantastic, not only in guiding us through the semester, but in teaching us things to take with us for life. Sarah and Paff both made individual lasting impressions on me as people and as leaders. This trip taught me to see the world in a more positive light, taught me to engage with the world around me, and to value every moment spent with the people and in the places I love. This is a program I would recommend to absolutely anyone looking for an eye-opening gap year experience.
Hands down the most meaningful and powerful journey I’ve ever been on. Carpe does an incredible job of making the students experience as educational, inspirational and fun as possible. The contacts you meet with are all incredible people who teach you invaluable life skills as long as the skills to become a great traveller. I’ve been trying to decide which part of the journey was my favorite but each country and each city had its own uniquely beautiful qualities. The Carpe Overseas Educators were not only incredible educators, they were two of the most intelligent, wise and fun people I’ve ever met and the overall adventure was greatly improved by their leadership skills and genuine love of exploring. To anyone considering Carpe Diem for their gap year, it was the perfect choice for me and I feel incredibly I found a program like that. Seize the day!
I knew Carpe Diem was the perfect fit for me when I read how valuable education, new experiences, and community was to each of their programs. Carpe accepts students who can take optional online college credits, and expands the minds of each student in a way I didn't think was possible. Starting in Portland, Carpe gives a crash course on traveling to that semester's student community, before the leave with their leaders into parts unknown. Traveling with the leaders is entirely safe, because they already have a plethora of countries under their belt, but they also won't coddle you when traveling, which proved to encourage the most growth in my case. Traveling through the South Pacific, I learned more about myself in those three months than I had in almost all of high school. I made lifelong friends within my group, and got cultural experiences I never would have set up on my own. We learned the values of hard work and volunteering, of team building and how to maneuver around a place where you can't speak the language. Living in foreign countries prepared me to live on my own here in America, it made me feel like I could do anything. Next, I traveled alone to Thailand after coming home for Christmas. If you're in the Latitudes Program, you get to choose what country and which organization you want to volunteer for. The process was very easy, my councilor Simone, was a magic maker when it came to checking off every wish I had to experience Thailand. It was scary at first, traveling alone to a country like I did, having to make your own way. But now I am fiercely independent: I can mange money, find a place to stay, good food to eat, all the while never speaking a word of Thai other than thanks and hello (still hard to say though). If I could do it all again, I would. The seven months I spent traveling were the best months of my life. I learned to most, felt the most, and lived the most in those days, and I hold those invaluable memories close to me everyday.