What position do you hold at Outward Bound CR and why do you like working there?
Debra: I am the Director of Marketing & Communications. OBCR allows me to fulfill my passions - intercultural education and outdoor experiential learning. In other words, I am able to bring the concept of alternative education to a network of high school and college students so that they may broaden their knowledge of themselves and their leadership abilities in order to succeed in school and beyond.
What is one thing you would tell any future gapper?
Debra: Take the time to investigate all your options, and choose the one that appeals to your passions the most. Give yourself the opportunity to expand beyond what you think you are capable of, and choose something that will push your boundaries and allow you to grow and find out more about what will make you happy and fulfilled.
What is the level of cultural immersion your gappers receive?
Debra: While here, gappers will work with Costa Rican natives on their course, travel through and work on community service projects for Tico communities, speak Spanish and spend time in Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Panama.
What would you tell a parent who's reluctant to send their kid abroad?
Debra: Sending your child away is never easy particularly when you think about the distance sending your child abroad creates. However, the benefits to your child are substantial. Your child will build real world skills not taught in a classroom - cultural awareness and secondary language proficiency come to mind.
Going abroad builds self confidence and self esteem, opens the mind toward diversity and change, and allows for a profound sense of personal priority - what is important to your child as he/she preps for college and beyond.
How does going on a gap year with Outward Bound CR prepare young people for college?
Debra: Outward Bound Costa Rica applies an experiential learning model that encompasses the environment. Our courses specialize in leadership development, building self-reliance character development, teamwork, cultural and language immersion, global citizenship, compassion for service to different cultures and outdoor technical training and certifications.