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Purposeful adventure for personal growth


We engage in a robust, globally-focused curriculum and a program of yearly travel to help students think outside of themselves, develop empathy, and prepare to contribute to the world around them. Through this approach, students grow together in the context of a larger community and create awareness of perspectives, experiences, and ways of life beyond their own.

Here is a sampling of our travel education programs:



Pacific Ridge School students at Machu Picchu

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students at a prayer temple in Vietnam

Life After Colonialism: VIETNAM

Students learned about the Vietnam War's effect on the country's people and how the Vietnamese society is still seeking its path after decades of colonialism and the war's devastation.

Students also learned about responsible tourism while visiting Hanoi and helped plant rice and pave a road during a four-day homestay in a remote mountain town. In Ho Chi Minh City they toured the War Remnants Museum and tried their hand at preparing local cuisine and traditional crafts.

Southern Land & Sky: CHILE

During the day, students hiked the Andes foothills, biked through the Elqui Valley, ran and rolled down epic Atacama Desert sand dunes, and visited high desert lakes, salt flats, cloud forests and frost-rimmed volcanic geysers. They also visited some of Chile's most famous astronomical telescopes, including the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory.

In the evenings, students turned their telescopes skyward and were rewarded with amazing views of planets, moons, stars and constellations. The adventure earned its nickname, “The Astronomy-Gastronomy Trip” from the delicious Patagonian food that fueled the group each day.

Education & Preservation: KENYA

Students in the service learning group Global Vantage experienced both the urban development and devastating poverty of Kenya when they traveled to visit their longstanding international partner: the Kibera Girls Soccer Academy (KGSA).

Global Vantage has been collaborating with KGSA students since 2010 to produce an award-winning international magazine. In between meetings with their KGSA hosts, NGOs and local journalists, students toured the United Nations headquarters and observed wildlife in Serengeti National Park.

Wilderness Exploration & Leadership: AMERICAN SOUTHWEST

During the pandemic when international travel was not possible, upper school students and faculty instead explored the southwestern landscape of the United States. Students hiked, rafted, camped, and visited historic sites in several national parks. 

Certain trips focused on specific activities, such as photography, surfing along the California coast, and sailing near Catalina Island. Students reveled in spending time together in the out-of-doors and freedom from physical distancing, masking, and Zoom. 

Refugee Crisis: GREECE

Students  traveled to Athens, Thessaloniki, Lesvos, and Hydra to investigate and document untold stories from the refugee crisis. They interviewed refugees, aid workers, and Greek citizens, then created film documentaries about the multi-faceted issue. In Athens, students heard firsthand about the debt crisis faced by Greece and its relationship to the refugee situation. 

Students also took time to visit important sites from antiquity, eat delicious Greek fare and experience the country’s natural beauty through hiking and sea kayaking.

female student meeting with Indian women

NGOs and Rural Communities: INDIA

After several years of fundraising to found and maintain a rural girls’ school in Alwar, Rajasthan, students traveled to meet the students whose education they were supporting. 

The trip focused on non-governmental organizations and their impact in rural communities. Students met with contacts who oversee the girls’ school, and an NGO that operates a trade school for at-risk teenage girls. One of the student fundraisers was a fashion show with outfits sewn by girls at the New Delhi school.

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Ethical Responsibility

We instill in our students a responsibility to act, a desire to do good, and the belief they can make a difference.


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