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Seamester offers unique educational voyages where students spend up to an entire semester at sea, sailing between countries and continents. For more than 40 years, we have consistently delivered outstanding educational experiences for students. We design our programs to provide engaging learning experiences with real outcomes in ways that are impossible to replicate in the traditional classroom.
Living as part of a close-knit team on an ocean-going vessel, students learn some of the most important lessons beyond academics: teamwork, hard work, and personal responsibility. All of our students receive academic credit from the University of South Florida along with PADI scuba certifications and IYT sail certifications. Our programs are designed to challenge students to realize that it is the journey, not the destination, that matters most.
Many thanks to the team at the Marsun Shipyard and Langan Design Partners but particularly to Travis, Ben, and Jon, the three intrepid GXG representatives who kept their heads down and made incredible things happen throughout an unprecedented time of our lives where international travel was ostensibly impossible. During the course of the next two months, a crew of about 15 people will alternate between applying epoxy filler to the hull/deck and sanding it smooth with 7ft sanding boards, with teams of four to five people on each, to level the hull and remove any imperfections in the surface. When I arrived at Marsun Shipyards the hull of Argo was fully welded and turned upright, three container loads of machinery and equipment had been shipped from the US and a small team of Sea|mester and ActionQuest staff had been organized to move out to Thailand to build out Argo’s masts and complete her final fit out. Over the course of six months I worked hand in hand with individuals at every level of the Marsun team and without exception I found them to be driven to make our vision of Argo a reality – doing it all with a smile and an enthusiasm that was both contagious and inspiring.
As an interview with Clipper Round the World recently highlighted, Wiggy has been working toward this goal for years. Ian Wiggin…is a passionate racer and sailing instructor who has been working towards his goal of becoming a Clipper Race Skipper for the past ten years. He has extensive sailing and instruction experience across Europe and the Mediterranean and recently completed his seventh Atlantic Ocean crossing.” Participants will embark on a 40,000 nautical mile race aboard a 70-foot yacht – guided by a professional skipper – as they complete eight legs of racing in a global circumnavigation.
Once you had decided to make Sea|mester part of your Gap Year, what was the dynamic like aboard Argo given that you were a gap year student onboard with students who were already in college? Granted, many of the people on my voyage specifically were gap year students, but even the people who were older felt exactly the same as the rest of us, which I think is very different from a typical college experience. After my gap year, most of my friends at the college I attended were in their late twenties and early thirties, and they all originally thought I was the same age as them, likely due to the fact that I had done so many things (travel, sailing, and working) since high school, rather than straight away attending college. The next semester of my gap year was spent working as a receptionist and taking art classes, and though I still couldn’t get myself to apply to colleges, I ended up being an art student at a local community college, and then transferring into their Associate’s degree program for Psychology.
Wednesday was a big day in the world of S/Y Ocean Star, as she just received her spring semester students in Antigua! So far the students have spent their days getting to know O-Star, settling into their new boat responsibilities, exploring the historic Nelson’s Dockyard, hiking to the tide pools above the Pillars of Hercules, and getting to know their fellow shipmates. Over the next 80 days, these students will sail, round-trip, over 1,000 nautical miles from Antigua to Grenada. We can’t wait to continue sharing all of the incredible experiences aboard O-Star over the coming weeks, but for now, the crew is busy welcoming and acclimating the students to their new floating home and there is certainly work to be done.