Bon Voyage! How to Cruise your way to a Spectacular Education

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All aboard, current and future college students!  Did you know there is an exciting way you can travel the world, keep up with your studies and pay little, if anything, for the privilege?  Now that the weather is getting colder, I’ve been doing some wishful thinking about taking the family on a balmy Caribbean cruise.  Sailing on board a humongous boat with hundreds of other people and visiting exotic ports of call reminded me of a college friend who did just that — all while still keeping up with studies in school.

Semester at Sea sail
Cruise ship wake

I’m talking about the Institute for Shipboard Education’s Semester at Sea (SAS).   Students in SAS hail from all over the USA and even worldwide.  It doesn’t matter what your major is; you just need to prove you have a respectable disciplinary record at your college and provide transcripts reflecting satisfactory grades.   You will be required to pen a short essay, and it helps to forward a recommendation from an instructor.  Once accepted to the program you can hold your place on an upcoming sailing with a deposit of $1,000.00.

Global Studies

The benefits of SAS are many and center around the first hand perspectives obtained while immersed in travel to a multitude of nations.  Indeed, Global Studies, a mandatory course in the program, will absolutely come alive for you as you actively circumnavigate the globe.  Imagine immersing yourself into a nation’s history and culture while within the country itself – an unparalleled opportunity for any young scholar!   Just as an example, remember those ancient Greek cultural studies you slogged through at your desk in 8th grade?  Okay.  What if you had learned about them from a dusty outcropping atop the acropolis in Greece?  Little different, eh?  Jack up the fascination factor by that cool thousand!

Mountainous Shore
Oh, the places you’ll go!

Depending on when you go, you can count on the itinerary changing from semester to another.  The foreign countries the ship will visit on the 2018 Spring cruise are Japan, China, Việt Nam, Myanmar (Burma), India, Mauritius, South Africa, Ghana, and Morocco.

Field classes masterfully incorporate your presence in another country into your course of study.  If you’re a Business major, for example, you’ll have opportunities to work concepts learned into your journey.  Marketing students study Japanese marketing while on the ground in Japan.  Similarly, retail studies are rounded out by a journey deep inside actual Chinese retail practices.

Global Perspectives

On top of these unique educational offerings, SAS students enhance personal traits such as adaptability, responsibility, and sensitivity.  However, they need not worry about studying a foreign language to fully participate.

Come, Sail Away!

Finally, it goes without saying; cruising is just plain fun, and this round-the-world cruise is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for most SAS scholars.  The MV World Odyssey, a German-built liner of several hundred fellow students as well as numerous faculty, school and cruise ship staff, offers seven entire decks at your disposal! There are not only classrooms but a pool, sundeck, café and much more.   SAS sets up Facebook groups prior to each upcoming semester, so you’ll meet your best friends for life long before you set foot on the gangplank.

Poseidon
Poseidon can’t wait to meet you, too!

I can only scratch the surface of the wealth of opportunities available via Semester at Sea.  Please, make yourself comfortable for about an hour and read all about the program via their website.  Let me know in the comments or via email how the application process goes for you!

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26 thoughts on “Bon Voyage! How to Cruise your way to a Spectacular Education

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  1. How awesome is that!?!? I can’t even imagine how much you could learn by being able to visit different countries, especially in a global marketplace like what we have now. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Indeed, there is a huge fad in education these last few years to impart a “Global Education” in the classroom. Most education-related fads come and go, but Semester at Sea has been around since 1963. I think they’re onto something! Thanks for your comment!

  2. Seems like a very unique experience! I distantly know someone who did this from the Kansas City area! Based off her pictures, she experienced so much that semester!

  3. I almost did this when I was in college. I heard so many great reviews. I feel travel is so important. I did backpack across Europe for three months after college and then my husband and I took a six-month honeymoon around the South Pacific. Education from travel is unlike no other.

    1. One criticism of SAS is that students don’t really get an in-depth cultural immersion, spending only a few days in each port. Hopefully you got to not only see a lot in your travels, but experience a lot as well!

  4. OMG!! where was this when I was in school. I would have done this for sure! so jealous..maybe my kids will do something like this when they are older

  5. I know I will definitely encourage my kids to study abroad when they get to college! I’ll have to keep this option in the back of my mind for them!

  6. What an amazing idea! I wish that this had been available when I was in college. I studied abroad, but I would have loved to do this too!

  7. Wow! Oh to be young again! The opportunities offered to college students these days are so varied and amazing! I’m excited for my kids and all the choices they’ll have.

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