What you can expect to get from doing a LEAPYEAR.
A FULL YEAR of College Credit! The program is designed as the first or second year of college. All LEAPYEAR students are enrolled as full-time students, and earn a full year of college credit from Naropa University. A number of past LEAPYEAR students have used the program as their final year of high school. It is a great alternative to a PG (post-graduate) year of high school - allowing another year of maturation without having to sit through another year in a formal classroom setting. This has been accomplished through their home high school, or through a northern California high school affiliated with LEAPNOW.
Experience, Maturity & Wisdom: Apart from the intrinsic value of these outcomes, one pragmatic value is that LEAPYEAR gives participants exactly what colleges are looking for in new applicants.
Fluency in Spanish and in-depth understanding of and exposure to another culture and region: The fall semester of LEAPYEAR is spent in Asia or Latin America - giving first-hand and in-depth understanding of the people and culture. Choosing Latin America gives participants the opportunity to gain functional fluency in Spanish. Students who choose to travel to Asia study Hindi or Tibetan. No previous language study is required.
Enhanced Job Readiness & Career Direction: Through LEAPYEAR, participants will be exposed to construction work, gardening, landscaping, cooking & baking, environmental work, SCUBA diving and specifically focused internship work. There will be intensive work on identifying your life purpose. Each participant w ill have the opportunity to do an internship of their choice - allowing for extensive and practical career exploration. The program incorporates regular creative writing, many group presentations, mock interviews, and resume writing.
Radically Enhanced Emotional Literacy: An excellent sense of what you are made of and how to work with your positive and negative emotions. A deep sense of your own capacity - tested by taking risks, and successfully meeting many diverse challenges. Most LEAPYEAR graduates demonstrate emotional literacy at a level that most Americans don't attain until their early 30's.
Self-Confidence: The program encompasses so many different experiences, work environments, skills, and challenges, that self-confidence is greatly strengthened. This confidence is based on meeting real world challenges in real time.
Enhanced Social Skills: From working and living and traveling with a group for 6 months, and from relating to diverse people from many countries.
SCUBA Certification: Some Latin America travel groups receive PADI Open Water Certification, depending on the current year's itinerary, and it's also possible to do so through an internship. For those who are already certified advanced levels of certification are available: Advanced Open Water, Medic First Aid, Rescue Diver, and Divemaster.
Physical Fitness: Through 60 minutes of daily exercise and hours of daily physical work.