The Expedition Education Institute
and the Expedition at Marlboro College

Spend a semester or a year traveling through some of North America’s major bioregions, developing and strengthening your Ecological Leadership, learning about yourself and the power and beauty of human and natural communities.

Immerse yourself in EXPERIENCE!  Without stepping foot inside a classroom, you will learn more than you ever have before. Alumni of the traveling bus programs consistently state that it changed their lives…forever, and for the better!

Three interconnected goals of our programs
are to put you into profound connection  with
1) the natural world,
2) other people and the community,
3) yourself.

You will learn skills and gain capacities that allow you to be more fully and wholly engaged in these relationships with nature, with other humans, and with yourself. Developing these relationships and the ability to engage in them are the basis for becoming an Ecological Leader. A leader must know oneself and know how to relate with a diversity of others. An Ecological Leader must understand how ecological systems function and recognize our own interconnectedness within these systems.


Practice the skills we all need to be the change:

  • Self-reliance
  • Self-direction
  • Self-awareness
  • Critical thinking
  • Reflective practice
  • Leadership
  • Clarifying your values
  • Accessing and expressing creativity
  • Identifying and exploring your passions
  • Find hope and become empowered to be the change


  • Communication: expression and listening
  • Teamwork and collaboration
  • Feedback—giving and receiving
  • Appreciative inquiry
  • Traveling and especially traveling in community brings you into the present fully
  • Be fully immersed in a community of engaged participants—this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that will develop your capacity to work well in every kind of group you find yourself in in the future.
  • Meet people from different cultures
  • Explore social and environmental justice issues


You will go on an incredible journey of discovery:  living and learning outdoors in connection with nature, sitting under dripping and glittering towering redwoods in the Pacific Northwest, or sleeping out under the wide open starry skies on the smooth red rocks in the Desert Southwest.

  • Find solitude in nature, on your free time in camp and on facilitated solo experiences. Properly supported, solos can function as rites of passage, allowing us the space to explore our relation to nature.
Each expedition includes time in the backcountry, taking us into the solitude and beauty of the natural world.

Each expedition includes time in the backcountry, taking us into the solitude and beauty of the natural world.

“I recall each ‘solo’ I ever experienced while on an expedition, whether it was 2 days, 1 day, or 3 hours, with incredible fondness; these solo experiences allowed me to get in touch with myself and with the complexity of the world around me in ways I rarely experience in daily life. Solo experiences help me to cultivate peace, patience, observation, reflection, and joy in being alive and connected.” -L.M., bus faculty alumni

  • Learn about important environmental issues and to the myriad of solutions already available and happening
  • Connect profoundly with the natural world
  • Learn important lessons and skills that will benefit you as you enter into college and throughout your life
  • Be more likely to succeed in your first year of college, your fourth year of college, and in the rest of your life.
  • Quote like the one of the Middlebury admission officer – we want students who are coming from a gap year……
  • Enjoy the incredible connection and support of living in an engaged learning community with your peers and your faculty….24/7.

The learning never stops!  And yet, it’s like no learning you’ve experience before.

A year-long or a one-semester option are available.

“It’s so much more than a program because of the way it shapes your thinking, your perspectives, and ultimately, your life.”  -Molly Reeve ‘07

quote from Eva:

Learn more than you’ve ever learned before without ever setting foot in class, without ever going to “class”

11 weeks, with a reflection and outreach period in the middle ( not a BREAK) only taking a break from group work – no workshops, no group meetings


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