• United States of America
4 - 26 weeks
Program Tags
Adventure Travel Conservation Cultural Immersion Hands-On Learning Medical Post-High School Scuba Diving Instruction Social Justice Wilderness

Program Details

Animal Viewing Boating Camping Canyoning City Exploring Farming Hiking Kayaking Rafting Remote Exploring Rock Climbing Scuba Diving Sightseeing Snorkeling Surfing Swimming
Cabin Guesthouse Hostel Lodge Tent
Age Min.
Age Max


Starting Price
Price Details
*Airfare for Hawaii flight is additional. SCUBA Diving E-Learning (must be completed before the program) is also additional.
What's Included
Accommodation Activities Some Equipment Meals Park Fees Tour Guide Transportation
What's Not Included
Airfare Travel Insurance
What's Not Included (Extra)

Scuba E-Learning (must be completed prior to program)

May 18, 2023
Nov 07, 2022
14 travelers are looking at this program

About Program

This semester provides access to some of the US' most beautiful and remote landscapes ranging from the jagged peaks of the Grand Tetons to the depths of Utah’s most spectacular canyons to the dazzling turquoise waters of Hawaii. Hiking through Grand Teton National Park, we explore some of the most pristine wilderness of the West. Partnering with local conservationists in Yellowstone National Park, we understand the current threats to native wolf and grizzly bear populations. Soaring atop the rapids of the Colorado River, we retrace history as we address water rights issues while sleeping under brilliant starry skies. Building a toolkit of medical skills, we join the ranks of outdoor professionals as Wilderness First Responders. Getting our hands dirty being a part of building sustainable homes, we see first-hand the power and potential of renewable energy sources. Meeting with migrants along Arizona’s borderlands, we get an inside glimpse into one of the US' most poignant challenges.

Video and Photos

Program Highlights

  • Research Grizzly Bears and Grey Wolves in Yellowstone National Park
  • Participate in a Multi-Day Rafting Trip Through Pristine Desert Landscape
  • Become Wilderness First Responder Certified
  • Learn about Immigration Reform and Initiatives along the Southern Border
  • Earn Your PADI SCUBA Certification on Hawaii’s Colorful Reefs

Program Reviews

4.90 Rating
based on 20 reviews
  • 5 rating 90%
  • 4 rating 10%
  • 3 rating 0%
  • 2 rating 0%
  • 1 rating 0%
  • Housing 4.3
  • Support 4.85
  • Fun 4.5
  • Value 4.85
  • Safety 4.85
Showing 1 - 8 of 20 reviews
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Northwest Gap

I had a great experience! It was so incredible traveling and exploring with the group. All of us got so close through the ups and downs of the trip. I feel like I have grown so much as a person during this experience. We have seen/ done so many amazing things that I will surely never forget. I am so grateful to have been able to participate in this trip. Everywhere we traveled to, ARCC had incredible partners that made the experience so valuable. If you are considering doing this program, get out of your comfort zone and do it!!

  • Exploring amazing places
  • Meeting so many new friends
  • Actually learning about the places we go, ARCC has so many partners everywhere we go who make it such a valuable learning experience
  • There is a lot of group togetherness, not much alone time
  • There were some pretty long travel days
  • It was a lot of nights in a tent
19 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Arcc gap western us trip

My review of the semester is overwhelmingly positive with some minor setbacks. I learned about topics I’ve always wanted to learn about and topics that I didn’t know that I wanted to learn about but was happy I did. I got out of my comfort zone and overall came out as a better person. my biggest challenges were personal challenges that may vary between each student. I feel that I have gotten so much closer to finding my passion and how I want to spend the rest of my life and what the best way to go about that is.

  • Wonderful environment for learning
  • Great opportunity to learn about places and connections you wouldn’t have otherwise found
  • Constantly learning new things if you have the right mindset
  • 70 days with the same people gets tiresome no matter how much you like them a
  • Sometimes not everyone’s voice gets heard in a big group
21 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

A once in a lifetime experience!!

Taking a gap semester with ARCC was undoubtedly one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. The places we went were breathtakingly beautiful, and the way we experienced each place was much more meaningful than if we had each been traveling solo. ARCC does a great job of choosing partners to work with and helps students have an experience that is very educational without being academically strenuous. Fellow students are like minded, conscientious individuals, and the trip sets you up for bonding and making lifelong friends! It is truly special to watch each other grow and learn while growing a lot yourself. This trip taught me a lot about myself and helped me to become more comfortable in my own skin. Ultimately, if you love being outside, exploring cool new places all the time, funny van rides, and embracing the moment, you’ll definitely enjoy your gap semester!

18 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Something new and unique

I did the Northwest Fall trip. This experience was entirely new than anything I’ve ever heard or experienced. I personally was able to experience new things and meet new people with different experiences and wisdom which to me is the most valuable part of the program. The group dynamic was pretty good, but people get on each other’s nerves for such long periods of times. It gave me lots of ideas about future careers and gave me the guidance that college couldn’t. I would highly recommend taking a break if you feel unsure if your next steps- if a gap semester is too expensive look for workaway programs.

  • New experiences
  • Valuable connections
  • New insights
  • Group dynamics are a toss of a hat
  • Everything is already planned which leaves little room for spontaneous activities
  • I can’t think of anything else
18 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Fall Northwest Gap Semester

My gap semester was amazing. I think the friendships I formed and experiences I had will follow me into my adult life, and I am so grateful for them all. I got to not just visit, but fully experience and immerse myself in the places we traveled to all through the PNW and Hawaii. I learned so much, both about myself, the places we went to, and how I exist in the world. We also did so much fun stuff! Hiking, scuba diving, cultural workshops, and so much more. Truly the best 70 days of my life. I’ll never forget any of it!

  • Scuba diving
  • Saw so much of the country
  • ARCC has so many connections, we got to do so much stuff that I wouldn’t have been able to do if I were traveling on my own
  • Can be hard to constantly be in a group
  • Sandy tents
  • 1 morning of frozen tents
19 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

amazing experience

As someone that didn’t know where to go after high school ARCC was an amazing and essential in finding out possible future careers. meeting new people and making lifelong connections either with my peers or with the partners/ organizations that we meet with. being able to get out of the state i live in and see the true beauty of the US and feeling as though i was on a different continent while not having left the north west US very much widened my view of the world we live in. I highly recommend ARCC in widening a persons perspective of the natural world and the people and cultures that live in it

  • seeing beautiful sighs
  • meeting awesome people
  • making meaningful connections
  • being out of your comfort zone
  • possible conflict between peers
17 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Northwest Fall Gap Program Group A

This is an experience you will keep forever. No one else can understand how special it is. The places you see are absolutely worth it and beautiful. The people you will meet will become your best friends. Even if it can be scary do it! It will the best 70 days of your life. It will be hard yes. The hikes, sleeping outside, the weather, being with the same 14 people for 70 days but you make the best memories out of it. Only those people will understand it. You will grow and be the best version of yourself. You will the happiest when you go home after this crazy trip. But also really sad to leave your new friends. I 100% recommend it.

What was your funniest moment?
Honestly all the moments we joke in groups are always so funny.
48 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

ARCC Northwest

This semester has been really meaningful. I have learned so much and grown immensely. It has been really cool to be in such a tight knit community. We have done such a variety of activities which is something very unique to find in a gap semester. Also the leaders are amazing! I would recomend this semester for someone looking for a challenge, yet with support the whole time. I feel much more prepared for future endeavors and have gained an immense amount of confidence. I always felt very safe !

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
Lots of camping! Now I feel much more comfortable :)
49 people found this review helpful.

Questions & Answers