Seamester

Program Reviews

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Hannah
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I am writing this review almost three years after I sailed from the Caribbean to Tahiti on S/Y Argo and I can still say that it was one of the best decisions I made during my undergraduate career. Although I was a pre-med undergrad student, I chose Seamester because it was such a unique experience that allowed me to explore while being an active member of the team. I loved that the students really did become active crew members during the trip and took on important responsibilities. The required courses were great and set a solid foundation for sailing, marine biology, and oceanography. However, I learned so much beyond the courses; I was able to learn about myself and how to work well in groups during stressful situations. Living with 25 people on a 112-foot boat really allows for a strong group bond to form.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
Sailing is no joke and should be taken seriously. One night underway, a shackle broke during a storm and the mainsail came tumbling down. We had to work hard to secure the sail during the dark and rainy conditions.
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Benjamin
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I went abroad for my Fall sophomore semester aboard Argo and I have to say, it was one of the best experiences of my life. We started off in France and sailed our way down the southern coast to Italy. Throughout the beginning of the trip our instructors quickly brought all of us closer together with actives as well as a deep level of integration in our new environment. They quickly became our friends and their participation was a key in how enjoyable and educational this experience was for me. 90 days and an ocean later, I have to say I have absolutely no regrets. This experience was truly one of a kind and I believe everyone should engage with it. This trip brought me countless exotic experiences, a far deeper application for the ocean and environment as well as lifelong friends. Thank you!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Pack very light. Bring only durable things and essentials. Bring lots of cash for the stops
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Caroline
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Do yourself a favor and come aboard this trip. My life aboard S/Y Argo in the Fall 2016 is one I will never forget and treasure to this day. I use the skills I learned from the trip everyday and I skyrocketed as a person. Coming back from the trip, I had a whole new outlook on life. I am not going to lie, it is hard work, but it is SO worth it and there are so many positive and fun aspects to being aboard. I improved vastly as a person on this trip. I also had never sailed prior and was 17 but that is not a problem with Seamester. You all will not regret this as I can assure you it will change your life forever in so many amazing ways. If you want to learn more about it I made three parts about it at my website a while ago: www.carolinewilbur.com

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Keep and open mind and stick to it! You will have the best time.
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Emmalee
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Not only was seamester a trip and experience of a lifetime that left me with wonderful memories and bonded friendships, but it also expanded my perspective on the world. I have felt a deepened desire to health the earth since doing seamester. Not to mention it’s a great time visiting various countries and having adventures only a lucky few are able to have. I got to experience everything from seeing the most beautiful sunsets in the world to seeing whale pods in the middle of the ocean. No day is ever the same and you get to experience all of it with a crew that truly does become ur family. It’s not an experience for the weak of mind, it’s challenging. However it is an experience for anyone wanting an adventure that is unique and beautiful and leaves you feeling accomplished, experienced and just straight up grateful to live in the world we do

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Come in with an open mind and also actively keep one. Not everything about this trip is glamorous, you won’t necessarily get a full nights rest most of the time BUT it’s a small price to pay for getting to travel the world and see things in the way you do. it’s worth trading some luxuries for experiencing ONCE in a lifetime things
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Peter
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I came to the program with no expectations because I didn't want to be disappointed. But soon, I realized that even if I had expectations, they would be exceeded with the awesome experiences this study abroad trip as created for me. You will be in rigorous Marine Bio and Oceanography courses; however, they are digestible for non-STEM students like me. You will learn so much about scuba diving and seamanship no matter what level you come in with. You will travel to the most remote places in the world and withness the ways of life that might be so different from yours, but yet feel the strong passion and enthusiasm the locals have for the visitors who come from far places. If you are going on a Sea|mester trip, make sure you bring a couple more long sleeves than you think you might need. Sun protection is important.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
I regret not taking an Astronomy course before, because the program provides the perfect opportunity to read the sky every single night, especially the times you are on watch.
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Bianca
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

During Sea|mester I was able to find out new passions that have, discover amazing friendships, visit places most people don't even know exist. I felt free like I never did before and I felt good. I laughed so much my jaw hurt six days out of seven of the week. Sea|Mester is challenging, and is not for everyone but if you think you are ready for it and want to do the most amazing experience of your life then go! You'll see the most incredible sunsets and moon rise, you'll see water, water, water and water again. It is almost hard to describe how much I loved what Sea|mester gave me. I would recommend to go without anyone you know. Go alone and you will find friends on the boat that will eventually become like family. Sea|mester is amazing enough not to make you feel the urge to look at your phone for even up to 20 days, trust me! ;)

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Kylie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I had high expectations coming into this program and all were greatly exceeded. It's nearly impossible to find the words to describe just how amazing this experience was. Every moment brought its own adventure. Whether it was learning to dive, slipping and sliding our way through hikes, competing in an international regatta, or spending a day as head chef, each experience was unique and irreplaceable. Aboard S/Y Ocean Star, I met amazing people (including my best friend), discovered confidence in myself I never knew I had, found a sense of direction and somehow fell deeper in love with the ocean and sailing. The staff and classes were amazing, making the experience even better. Coming in as a biology student, I had never been able to be as fully immersed in my studies as I was aboard Ocean Star. Studying abroad with Sea|mester was one of the best decisions I've ever made. I would do it all again in a heartbeat.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Every day is different, so take advantage of each opportunity & learn from the challenges. Embrace the differences from your daily life. You will constantly be surprised by yourself & your shipmates, so take the time to get to know everyone. I also highly recommend keeping a journal!! These will be memories you'll want to have and share for a lifetime. 80 days can fly by, enjoy every moment.
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alex
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I had done two years of Action Quest prior to my decision to try SeaMester. It seemed like a big jump and a much more serious undertaking- and it was, in the best possible way. My six weeks aboard Argo remain a few of the most significant of my life thus far. During that time, I was responsible for my own well-being as well as that of my fellow shipmates. It was an environment that did not lack in struggle, but was rich with fun, camaraderie, learning and friendship.

You must be prepared to embrace the work and responsibility, as you will be a member of the crew, but do not take that with any negative connotation. The bonds you will form in that type of environment are unique and strong. The full-time staff are knowledgeable, helpful, often hilarious and, for lack of a better word, awesome. You will meet and make friends with people from all over the world, and learn from people who are different from yourself in a way which is wonderful and eye-opening.

If you are lucky enough to be able to get onboard a ship with SeaMester, do not take it for granted- jump at the opportunity and treat it as the privilege that it is. If you are on the fence, pull the proverbial trigger without any more hesitation. I could not be more grateful to have gone on that voyage across the Atlantic, and I am confident that you will feel the same.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Try your absolute best to take in every single moment and experience. It will all pass you by in the blink of an eye. Also, make a point of looking up at the sky at night. There is no light pollution at all in the middle of the ocean (something which is, unfortunately, extremely rare) and the stars, along with everything else, are utterly breathtaking. Words cannot adequately express it.
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Garison
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I often find myself wanting to be back on S/Y Argo. There, I found a great community of friends who all pushed each other to achieve more than we thought we could. Since coming home, I've told people how much I miss being in a community where everyone is working hard and motivating others to do the same. Because of this communal work ethic, there was never a wasted day. An important note on this, though, it is very important that you are willing to not only contribute, but do your best in each of your jobs every day. I'm not saying people were perfect, but the ones who tried hard were the ones who made the trip better for the entire boat. So a willingness to fully commit to each task (even night watch from 12 a.m. - 4 a.m., or deep cleaning the boat) is a must. As far as classes go, the workload is challenging, not because the subject matter is impossible. but because each day is so full. Every student found the right balance for them, though, between academics and exploring the South Pacific on the trip. One important thing to note is that the twelve college credits from the trip will make you a transfer student at many colleges. I was a gap year student, and did not realize this until I tried to apply to colleges in the fall, and was told to apply in March as a transfer student. So, if you are on a gap year, make sure you know what your future college's credit requirements are for freshman. Finally, here are some of my favorite memories from S/Y Argo: cooking while underway (aptly described as traumatic yet satisfying), swimming with humpback whales, bow watch (sitting at the front of the boat with one other watch team member) while the sun sets, and scary stories under the beautiful stars on night watch. I left Argo more self-confident and motivated, and was very happy I made the decision to make it part of my gap year.

What would you improve about this program?
More night dives, and finding the good spots to dive in each location. Sometimes, we would dive and see very little despite being in some of the best diving locations in the world. This was because the crew didn't have the means to get to better sites.
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London
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Sea-mester was the most impactful three months of my life so far. Not only was it super fun, but the amount of growth and learning is something I will have forever.
When I first boarded Argo, I had no sailing or boating experience at all. I thought this would be an issue but it wasn’t at all. They taught us everything we needed to know and were there to answer any and every question.
One of my favorite parts of being on Argo was the community you build with your crew mates. You may arrive knowing no one, but you leave with 20+ friends and family for life. You get to meet people you may never thought to talk to and learn how much everyone around the world has in common.
I can’t think of another program that offers college course, traveling, scuba certifications and sailing experience. This program allowed me to try and see new places I otherwise wouldn’t have an the opportunity too.