class afloat
Gain high school or uni credits and travel the world? Sounds good! Source: Shutterstock.

Many young people are struck with the desire to travel, just as they are to learn. And there’s very little reason they can’t do both.

As students are heavily encouraged to take a “year on” rather than a year off even by prestigious institutions like Ivy League university Harvard, more programmes emerge to allow students to travel the world and work toward their futures, promoting a healthy compromise.

To meet students’ desire to learn while travelling, programmes like Semester at Sea and Class Afloat have been developed.

With Class Afloat, students get to travel to three continents visiting at least 22 different cities while earning high school or university credits.

The ship first set sail over 30 years ago and has now carried more than 1,700 students over 700,000 nautical miles, visiting over 250 ports all over the world.

Taking experiential learning to a new level, students learn to sail the ship as well as exploring historical and cultural sights on land and studying at sea.

Students spend around five hours a day in small classes working towards their respective courses. Gap year students can choose to complete high school-level courses or university-level.

A fully-accredited secondary school curriculum is delivered by on-board faculty for grade 12 students, allowing students to add towards a Nova Scotia Ministry of Education High School Diploma. The university students are enrolled at Acadia University in Nova Scotia, Canada, during their time on the ship.

“You wake up every morning. You step out on the deck. You look around. You see the world all around you and you think, ‘I go to school here.’ It’s incredible,” said Canadian graduate Marc Lehodey who studied at sea in 2009 and again in 2011.

But it does come at a cost, expect a single semester for a Canadian student to cost CA$36,000 (US$27,850) and a full year CA$52,000 (US$40,000) and for international students you’re looking at CA$39,500 (US$30,550) for a semester and CA$57,500 (US$44,500) for the year.

Class Afloat is accredited by Nova Scotia Department of Education and the Quebec Ministry of Education.

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