Safe arrival in Fiji!

After a long journey, we’re happy to report that the HONGI crew has arrived in Fiji! They are settling in to their hostel and diving into orientation. They are already enjoying getting to know one another and excited for all the adventures to come. Stay tuned, as in the coming days they will start to post their own updates. We look forward to following along on their journey!… Read More

MAYA group has arrived safely

After their overnight flight, we’re happy to report that the MAYA group has arrived in Guatemala. They are en route to their hostel where they are looking forward to having breakfast and diving into their orientation. They are enjoying getting to know one another and looking forward to these next three months of exploration, learning, and adventure! Stay tuned, as they will start to post their own updates here in… Read More

Hongi Group Together in Los Angeles!

Dear Hongi Friends and Family: We wanted to update you and let you know that the Hongi group has safely arrived at LAX. The group will go through security and then dive into a few introduction and orientation activities led by their Overseas Educators, Sarah and Nathan. The group will then embark on their long flight over the Pacific Ocean, en route to Nadi, Fiji! We will provide an update… Read More

Safe arrival

After an overnight flight, our South America crew has arrived safe and sound in Quito! They are looking forward to settling in to their hostel, enjoy dinner and a good night sleep before diving into their orientation tomorrow. They are doing well, happy, enjoying getting to know one another, and excited to begin their journey in Ecuador. In the coming days, they will being to post updates here too, so… Read More

End of semester

Greetings from our homes, As we read this we may be sitting back sharing stories of our time hiking to Machu Picchu, sleeping in later then we have for the last three months, eating delicious food we haven’t had the chance to eat for the last semester, or maybe we are still in Peru enjoying one last soda y segundo! Whatever it may be, the adventure that the 14 of… Read More

And a fond farewell…

That’s it! It’s a wrap. Al final. By now, students have traveled on to their respective places that they call home. Saying goodbye to them was bittersweet, sad to see them go but grateful that we were able to see them grow in many ways over our journey together. In the last three months we have been able to see three different countries and experience three different cultures. We have… Read More

Final blog from South America

by Sarah Ruehl Three months is a very odd length of time. In the grand scheme of things, three months is a blink for mother Earth, Pachamama. Even for us mere humans, three months is 1/400th of our lives, considering we live 100 years. Yet, looking back on everything I did and learned with these thirteen strangers in the last three months, it’s hard to believe it hasn’t been three… Read More

Final blog from Central America!

Sarah Spirek here! As our semester comes to a close, I just wanted to write a few closing comments for our trip. We have all learned so much, some of it we won’t even realize until we get home. We have built a little family within our group and have suffered the loss of three of our members. We have spent the last three months learning, growing and experiencing the… Read More

Turtle conservation

We spent our last week in Costa Rica at KUEMAR, a turtle rescue project. It was hard work, but it paid off with our once in a lifetime experiences! Every night, we took shifts at neighboring beaches where we patrolled. We saw our first adult sea turtles and got closer than we could ever imagine with them. We watched them as they scooted their way out of the water and… Read More


Sailor and Sarah here! Our group spent the last week volunteering at a permaculture farm called CIRENAS. Due to a recent donation, they were able to build a hatchery and start up a turtle conservation project which we had the opportunity to work on. Our roles included exhuming nests that had already hatched, recording data and patrolling the beach. Most of the group took the opportunity to take a shift… Read More

Student Directed Travel!

Coming to you live from Cuzco, Peru… It’s Liam Thrun! So first things first I just wanted to say thanks to Patrick for wishing me luck on this task. I will be blogging to you all about our Student Directed Travel! To kick it off, we traveled around 12 hours from Cuzco to Arequipa (thanks to Yola). During the ride, we watched Point Break for the 3rd time on our… Read More


The group had a wonderful week at CIRENAS, learning about sustainability, permaculture, and turtles! A few photos from their adventures, with more updates to come: Kaylee wrote an article about their time there that was published in the CIRENAS newsletter: Working with baby turtles!… Read More

Scavenger hunt blog: Smells

Walking through Xela, there are so many different and unique smells. From delicious street food to the dry herbs in the market. But not all of the smells here are ones to be sought out. Walking through the streets, the unfortunate odor of garbage and gasoline is extremely prevalent. Luckily enough the hostel we are staying in is usually filled with the aromas of cleaning fluids and basil. But, if… Read More

Scavenger hunt blog: Sounds

The sounds in Xela have been both familiar and foreign to us thus far! We have heard things like cars, food cooking at a street food stand, and people conversing with each other. We have heard some new things, like people speaking in Spanish with one another and new music. Some of our favorites have been children laughing, tacos simmering, music we have shared, and the voices of those in… Read More

Scavenger hunt blog: Sight

We have seen so many amazing sights this week! When we were first flying in, those lucky enough to get window seats were treated to a bird’s eye view of Guatemala city. The sights continued as we piled into a minibus and began the long, winding trip up to Xela. We passed acres upon acres of farmland, most of which were barren for the winter. As the bus navigated perilously… Read More

Scavenger hunt blog: Taste

On the first night we ate some delicious Thai salads with a wonderful peanut butter dressing. However, our favorite meal was today when we ate scrumptious tacos filled with chicken and peppers on tortillas with lentils and guacamole on the side. For a drink today we had some fresh papaya juice the after taste was a little odd. The best drink we had so far was this magnificent lime and… Read More

Safe arrival!

Dear families and friends of the Southeast Asia group, I’ve just heard from group leaders Cari and Jon – the group has arrived safely to Chiang Mai, Thailand! They are gathering their bags and getting ready to head to their hostel. All is well so far, they had a safe and easy flight, but they are looking forward to getting some rest and then diving into their orientation. Stay tuned… Read More

Safe arrival

Dear families and friends of the Central America MAYA group, I just heard from Hannah and Julian that the group has landed in Guatemala City. They had an easy flight, are gathering their bags, and getting ready to head to Quetzaltenango (AKA Xela) to settle in, get some rest, and start their orientation. Later this week, they’ll post some updates here about the start of their journey. We wish them… Read More