Practice Mindfulness on a Carpe Diem Education India Gap Year

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Introducing: New Semester Program!

We are exploring new frontiers! We're excited to announce a 3-month semester program in Morocco & Spain. If trekking in the Atlas mountains, living with a host family in Marrakech, and working with a NGO focused on supporting the migrant community in Spain sounds interesting to you, dive deeper by clicking the link below.

About

Traverse the diverse ecological and spiritual landscape of the Himalayas. Witness the burning ghats of Varanasi up close and personal. Practice mindfulness in the “yoga capital of the world.” Get in touch with your spiritual side and dive deep into some of the world’s oldest religions and cultures—all in the Northern Plains and Himalayas of India.

Experiential Education: Practice various meditation techniques, take daily yoga classes, and engage in Indian and Hindu philosophy lessons at an ashram retreat.

Community: Stay at a communal organic farm in the foothills of the Himalayas; help plant new crops and harvest fresh fruit from the garden to make healthy meals together in the kitchen.

Intercultural Exchange: Learn about Buddhism and Tibetan Refugee Crisis through language exchange with Tibetan monks—and visit the home of the holy Dalai Lama.

Note: This is a 3-month long semester program.

As a Carpe Diem participant, you'll not only have access to our immersive, service-based programming and stellar staff -- but you can opt to also receive up to 18 college credits (an official transcript from Portland State University) and may be eligible for financial aid. We're one of the only Gap Year providers on the market that offers these options for a nominal fee.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

98%
based on 5 reviews
  • Housing 9.4
  • Support 10
  • Fun 9.6
  • Value 9.6
  • Safety 9.8
Showing 1 - 5 of 5
Willow
10/10

India

I have just returned from Carpe Diems India program and it was such a fulfilling experience. We traveled to so many places and in each place Carpe had set up wonderful programs to do and interesting people to meet. I felt very supported by the group and the overseas educators, and even when we faced challenges we were able to discuss and navigate them in a productive way. Also throughout the application process and then through the visa process the staff in Portland were very helpful and easy to reach.

Yes, I recommend
Photo of Zoe McLeod
Zoe
10/10

Very possibly the best three months of my life

My trip to India with Carpe Diem was easily one of the best decisions I have ever made. India is the most wonderful, confronting, crazy, fascinating and beautiful country I have ever been to, and I've been home for a week but I'm already missing it so much. I'm so glad I got to experience it with Carpe Diem. I don't believe I would have been able to have the same amazing opportunities and experiences if I was travelling on my own or with a tour group. For me it was a perfect balance between a community and independent experience, and I felt much more like a traveller than I did a tourist. I couldn't have asked for a better group or leaders and they truly became like family to me. I was able to grow and push myself so much as a person while feeling completely supported and safe, and the things i have learnt about myself and about the world I hope I never forget. Whether it was learning about Buddhism, Sikhism or Hinduism directly from people who practised them, trekking in the incredible Himalayas, dancing and having broken Hindi/English conversations with locals, volunteering, just exploring and so much more, every experience was impactful and rewarding in its own way. If you are thinking about applying, I honestly can't recommend it enough.

How can this program be improved?
Everything was amazing and I don't have any complaints, but if I could say one thing it would be a little more time in places like Kolkata, Varanasi and Amritsar, in order to explore a bit more.
Yes, I recommend
Colleen
10/10

The Language of the World

As my group and I toured the grounds of the site where the Buddha attained enlightenment, I wandered off in search of something stimulating. Before I could get very far, a man grabbed me by the hand and started to pull me with him. In America, if a random man started pulling me with him, I'd probably freak out. But India is different. I had no concern for this man, but rather enjoyed his bold confrontation. He spoke no words to me as he led me to a bench and sat down. He gestured that I sit next to him. I did, and it became clear that he spoke no English and I spoke no Hindi. He calmly opened his book, started to read, and placed a croissant on my lap. I ate the croissant and sat next to him in silence. We sat there for maybe 20 minutes, saying and doing nothing. Every once in a while he would look at me a grin a toothless smile. I was having a blast. There was a mutual understanding between me and this man that could be felt and experienced without words. If you've ever read the alchemist, this is what I believe to be the language of the world. It's a feeling, an emotion, and an understanding in your soul. I have continued to carry on conversations in this language in my travels across India, to Tanzania, Europe, and even in the United States.
My gap year experience with Carpe Diem has solidified loose ends in my life. I am becoming the person I want to be from this experience. If you're looking for a sign to tell you to take a gap year then these words are for you; do it.

How can this program be improved?
I wouldn't change a things, flaws are never really flaws
Yes, I recommend
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Daphne
10/10

Experience of a lifetime!

I learned so much from this program, my favorite parts were when we were close to Tibet where I learned all about Tibet and stayed with a wonderful host family. I also got blessed by the Dalai Lama and hiked the Himalayas. If you have the opportunity to do this program, why not? India is a beautiful place and a wonderful country where you get chances to take turns with responsibilities and learn what it is like to travel for future experience. This is not a normal study abroad where you go to class in France, Italy or the U.K. This is a program that will stretch you to the limits of what you thought was possible and leave you feeling confident. The leaders are great and very supportive and you get to bond with a group of people so closely its amazing. I urge anyone interested in this program to just do it, whats really holding you back?

How can this program be improved?
I think if I had to change one thing it would be to stay in one place just a little bit longer. We weren't in one place for more than a week and that's a ton of time just traveling from one place to the next. I would have liked to get to know people in one spot for longer. But this is personal preference and it was nice to be able to see so many places in just 3 short months.
Yes, I recommend
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Payton
9/10

If you're thinking India… GO.

I can't speak highly enough about my India experience with Carpe Diem Education. The program offered the perfect amount of independence and structure to where I felt completely supported at all times by my overseas educators and peers. The itinerary was incredible, allowing me to gain new perspectives and experience a lot of what India has to offer. From early morning temple visits with my host family in McLeod Ganj, to volunteering with disabled girls in Calcutta, my time in India was incredibly meaningful. The relationships I built with those in India as well as the members within my group are ones that will last a lifetime. Needless to say, I had so much fun as well. The energy was contagious and my OE's did a wonderful job of providing enough bonding initiatives to where we became family. India is beautiful, intense, overwhelming, exciting, thrilling, sad, inspiring, and everything in between. It is a phenomenal place that will push you outside your comfort zone, allowing you to develop and grow as an individual. I highly recommend this program to anyone looking for a challenging, engaging, and thrilling adventure.

Yes, I recommend

About Carpe Diem Education

Experiential education. Community. Intercultural exchange.

...it's how we connect and give back to the global communities we interact with. It's how we're redefining what it means to embark on a meaningful gap year abroad. Learn a foreign language,...