GAP REVIEWS

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Impact Grants

The ARCC Gap experience is best told through our past students and their parents. We receive countless emails, letters, and phone calls from students and parents telling us about their incredible ARCC experience; each one represents a student whose life has changed by traveling with ARCC. We are thrilled to share their comments.

“The number one thing I will take away from ARCC is how to be more of a go-with-the-flow person. Our group has mastered the art of turning a wrong move into the best day, and I will hold on to that ability in my daily life.”

— Sadie B., Los Angeles, CA, Northwestern ’25


“ARCC has pushed me outside of my comfort zone and allowed me to grow as an individual. I learned so much – both curriculum-based and also about myself. I’ve developed my interpersonal skills while simultaneously developing long-lasting relationships!”

— Julia T., Scituate, MA, Georgetown University ’25


“My husband and I are both thrilled that Tori had this experience and I appreciate all of the hard work of the ARCC staff to make this semester happen for our kids. It would have been easier on your end to take the semester off and not offer any trips, but we are so thankful that this was available. A gap year was not on our radar, but I think it will turn out to be such an important part of Tori’s growth and development. It has prepared her for independent living and has opened up experiences for her. Many thanks from grateful parents!”

— Parent of Tori S., Lenexa, KS, CU Boulder ’25


“I am grateful beyond my ability to properly express our appreciation for the flexibility and tenacity of purpose ARCC and the ARCC Hawaii instructors displayed before, during, and at the conclusion of this adventure. While Calvin’s peers sat in front of Call of Duty in empty dorm rooms and tired homes, you guys gave Cal colorful life memories, valuable life experience, and sturdy connections all his own. Whoa! Well done. I watched Calvin explain the other night to his grandmother that ARCC prepared him to seek adventure, not shy away from it. I was taken aback.”

— Parent of Cal R., Princeton, NJ, Skidmore ’25


“Thank you so much for providing an incredibly rewarding and eye-opening experience on the Hawaiian islands which allowed Aidan to identify his passions and further explore his interests! Aidan thoroughly enjoyed the diversity of the community service projects as well. Your research and development of these gap semester programs have been instrumental in transforming the lives of our teenagers and after 18 months of living with a challenging global pandemic in the midst of their education, their happy experiences are even more meaningful and magnified!”

— Parent of Aidan M., Basking Ridge, NJ, Eckerd College ’26


“Outstanding program. Cole shared that the Southwest exploration allowed him to experience some of the most beautiful and awe-inspiring places in the country. He came home with a greater sense of self and independence. Incredible!”

— Parent of Cole H., Boston, MA, University of Massachusetts ’24


“We are all indebted to ARCC for helping launch JT into the world. The opportunities you provided to JT (and all young adults you serve) to take the time to understand himself and understand the world was incredibly valuable. The thoughtfulness you put into making it a positve and lasting experience is worth all the effort and definitely made all the difference for JT.”

— Parent of JT W., San Francisco, CA (sent to ARCC five years after his semester)


“Sasha came back radiating confidence and well-being about his ability to be in nature, engage with it, and know himself. He found an inner peace that he was really missing during the zoom time of Covid. He loved the sites you visited, the landscape, hiking, and being in a group of peers. We are just thrilled with the program! You found an amazing mixture of people and issues for them to explore. A wonderful range of experiences and he will never forget this trip. We are so grateful!”

— Parent of Sasha J., New York, NY, Macalester College ’25


“He loved it! Saw the country differently than he had in the past. Eye-opening! I believe they had the time of their lives, grew to be stronger friends, and at the same time, bonded with the whole group. From our end, it was an incredibly successful experience for everyone! Fabulous job!”

— Parent of Jonah R., Scarsdale, NY, Drexel University ’24


“What an amazing experience for her and such a welcome relief for her mind and spirit after a disappointing high school senior year because of COVID. “

— Parent of Julia S., Berkeley Heights, NJ, University of Delaware ’25


“All we can report is Grace is having an amazing time! When we finally face-timed with her she was just so mature and composed and delighted with her trip. She said her group was quite special and they had formed a real bond. The food is great. The program is great. We’re so happy with ARCC – you’ve really exceeded our expectations!”

— Parent of Grace C., Southampton, MA, Williams College ’25


“Victoria did not have a single complaint. It is all about temperament and learning life’s most important lesson of our COVID times – agility, adaptability, and resilience – and fortunately, Victoria recognizes the opportunity for growth and is just at a perfect place with ARCC to embrace all that is presented.”

— Parent of Victoria W., Kilauea, HI, University of New Hampshire ’25


“I think this program is great at encouraging leadership, and I loved stepping up and helping out. It offered me the unique opportunity to have insightful reflections on my own life while learning about the lives of others. I urge anyone to take advantage of this opportunity with ARCC and explore everything the world has to offer.”

— Macie P., Carlsbad, CA, Boston University ’26


“I have gained more confidence in myself and developed a greater sense of what I want to do. My love for reading was reinvigorated during the semester andI have a greater excitement to return to traditional learning after this.”

— Vinson M., Atlanta, GA, Harvard College ’26


“The hope for this semester was to give William a chance to have a break from his daily life, to see the world, to have a chance to re-connect with people, and to feel the joy and comfort of being part of a community. This semester did all that and so much more. William is a changed person, but also he is back to the way he was when he was younger – funny, smart, kind, interesting, and curious. The love he feels for this group of friends is more than I could have ever hoped for.”

— Parent of William F., Burlington MA


“It was the best 70 days of my life. I have friends for life and created some of the best memories.”

— EJ M., Raleigh, NC, Appalachian State ’26


“Some can agree that it can be hard to pack up your life and take it on the road, but it is so worthwhile. All of us have stepped into a door that will expand our own paths and possibilities. This East Africa Gap semester has been a once-in-a-lifetime experience and has struck me as beautiful, captivating, sometimes incomprehensible but all of it has been astonishing.”

— Bryanna F., Manassas, VA, Virginia Commonwealth ’24


“The semester was fantastic. The preparation and the experience were amazing and impactful. She will remember it forever. Her peer group was perfectly matched to her; she couldn’t have been happier with her co-travelers. These are relationships she’ll value for a lifetime. It was the ideal blend of community engagement and exploration. She loved each and every interaction and stretched herself in ways not typically available to her back home. She learned there are many different ways to interpret ‘best’ and left with a deep love of a continent, people, culture, and traditions she is eager to revisit.”

— Parent of Victoria H., Dunstable, MA, Connecticut College ’23


“We are thrilled that she/we chose ARCC! Very positive experience. Went in with high expectations and were not disappointed. Very well run, structured, safe program. She met great friends, learned a lot and was happy!”

— Parent of Becca S., Glencoe, IL, Tufts ’22


“Raphi had an extraordinary experience; far better than we had even hoped. After a very challenging COVID year, he needed an opportunity to reflect, mature, and regroup. The Centro-Caribbean ARCC program provided all of that and allowed him to learn the culture and language of a part of the world with which he was unfamiliar. The combination of individual and group tasks was perfect, and the program provided just the right amount of support. Raphi grew and gained independence as a result of the program and he is much more enthusiastic about his future. The program provided just the right amount of structure and opportunity for him to grow individually, and working in a group this size with peers his age was critically important.

— Parent of Raphi G., Wellesley, MA, CU Boulder ’25


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