Westcoast Connection

Westcoast Connection

About

Westcoast Connection has served over 35,000 teen travelers since 1982. We offer summer programs targeted for students completing the equivalent of US grades 7-12 (approximate ages 13-17). With more than 100 programs in over 20 countries, we strive to offer fully immersive, high quality, perfectly planned, perfectly paced adventures for each and every teen through our key programs.

The intensity and variety of our Active Teen Tour programs are all about fun, action-packed days. Our Pre-College Enrichment programs offer endless study abroad options at leading campuses, such as UCLA, California and McGill University, Montreal. We also offer unique programs in partnership with the editors of Seventeen and The American Red Cross. Our Community Service programs are eligible towards the prestigious United States President's Volunteer Service Award. Our Global Adventure programs are exploration travel experiences developed for older teens in small group sizes.

Founded
1982
Headquarters

154 East Boston Post Road
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
United States

Reviews

Default avatar
Rebecca
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I had the BEST time traveling around the Pacific Northwest of the United States and Western Canada. For me, the highlights of the trip were skiing at Mt. Hood and going whitewater rafting. The staff and other kids on the trip were an amazing group of people that meshed unbelievably well. One moment on the trip that really exemplified how amazing the group of people were was during one of the first nights that we spent camping. Everyone helped each other put up their tents and cook dinner even though it did not have to be a whole trip effort. Our staff also set up a small fire so we could roast marshmallows after dinner. But it was not the camp fire nor the marshmallows that made this one of the best nights of the trip. It was having all campers and staff sitting around the camp fire sharing stories. It was amazing how easily everyone opened up to one another and how quickly I felt comfortable amongst this new group of people. I was really nervous because I was traveling by myself and didn’t know anyone. But the other kids were super nice and the activities organized by the staff allowed me to quickly make friends. If I could relive this summer I would in a heartbeat; it was truly a summer of a lifetime!!

Programs

Displaying 1 - 9 of 67
Westcoast Connection
Westcoast Connection: United States
United States of America
1 review

Travel throughout the United States with Westcoast Connection, home of...

Westcoast Connection
Westcoast Connection: College Preview Week in Boston
United States of America

We know that choosing the right school is the big great step for every...

Westcoast Connection
Westcoast Connection | Pre-College Enrichment Barcelona
Spain

There is no better city in Spain for teenagers to spend a summer...

Westcoast Connection
Westcoast Connection | Pre-College Enrichment Florence
Italy

Study abroad in Florence, one of Europe’s most beautiful and...

Westcoast Connection
Westcoast Connection | Pre-College Enrichment Montreal at McGill
Canada

Study and live in one of the world’s most international and vibrant...

Westcoast Connection
Westcoast Connection | Pre-College Enrichment UCLA Campus
United States of America

Want to get a sneak peek of how college life is? Join this special pre...

Westcoast Connection
Westcoast Connection | European Experience ON TOUR
Multiple Countries

Are you ready to experience Europe? This trip is your chance to meet...

Westcoast Connection
Westcoast Connection: European Discovery Active Teen Tour
Multiple Countries

Name all the places you wish to visit in Europe. Now check our...

Westcoast Connection
Westcoast Connection: Ultimate California 21 Day Trip
United States of America

Does this summer trip sound too good to be true? It may, but don’t...

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Aaron Goldstein

Job Title
Trip Director

Aaron is an experienced Trip Director with Westcoast Connection. He has led programs in California, Costa Rica, and Ecuador & the Galapagos.

What is your favorite travel memory?

There’s so many to choose from! Each program is so different, not only because of the places you visit, but because of the people you are with. My favorite “travel” memory would be kayaking Tortuga Bay in the Galapagos – crystal blue water with giant tortoises swimming under your boat! However, my favorite travel “memory” would be when my group in Costa Rica played a game of soccer with some locals in the pouring rain! We were all wet and we lost, but the group bond we developed was uniquely special because of it.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

I’ve definitely learned not to sweat the small stuff and find creative solutions to make the most of an unideal situation. As it happens when you travel, things can go not exactly as planned and you need to make the most of it. A tree falls in a storm blocking the road ahead? Make a pit stop and try some local fruits and take in the picturesque views from the mountain top! There’s always a bright side to every experience!

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

I really can’t point to a “best” story I’ve heard from someone else. Usually my alumni trip members tell me about some funny story involving some really cool person they met on their past trip. My competitive nature sees it as a challenge to ensure that I can provide an even better experience with greater friendships on the programs I lead. I’m in the business of creating memories of a lifetime after all!

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

Thailand Community Service. I’ve never been to Asia so there’s that aspect – but more importantly the service projects on the programs are super interesting. They span from renovating an orphanage, to having a cultural exchange with an indigenous tribe, developing day camp style programming for a school and more! The program really touches on a variety of different kinds of service, plus you get to explore the country with some really cool activities too. Who doesn’t want to SCUBA and snorkel at Koh Phi Phi?

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

The motto is “Each and Every” and they truly mean it! They accommodate the unique needs of “each” trip member while also looking out for the well being of the whole group – the “every.” When one of my student’s couldn’t go canyoning because they were afraid of heights – the company provided a horseback riding activity just for them! Another time a company supervisor came to visit us and brought us all ice cream and candy after we had been stuck in traffic. They really do care about everyone!

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

Safety at WCC is their #1 concern! And that’s not just physical safety – but also emotional. They stress the importance of ensuring the social well-being of every trip member. They know that you can have the best itinerary in the world, with lots of cool places and activities, but if you’re not enjoying the people you’re with – you won’t have fun. From how they assign rooms, to the activities, to the staff they hire – it’s all part of a giant puzzle that makes each individual program the best it can possibly be for every trip member (and staff too).