The Experiment in International Living is the most experienced provider of summer abroad programs for high school students. For more than 85 years, our immersive programs have allowed participants to explore the world in an authentic and meaningful way, while developing enduring friendships through cultural experiences.

We provide hands-on experiences through thematic programs and introduce our students to different cultures by engaging in activities with locals, as well as our homestays–we go to learn, not to teach.

Each year, hundreds of students come away from The Experiment with invaluable cultural, leadership, language, and interpersonal skills that help them thrive in diverse environments and prepare them to succeed in college and careers.

We have a long history of developing leaders and global citizens. In 1961, President John F. Kennedy signed into existence the Peace Corps, which was shaped in part by one student’s experience with The Experiment.

The Experiment is the flagship program of World Learning (, a thriving global nonprofit organization with education, sustainable, development, and exchange programs with impact in more than 150 countries. World Learning is part of the World Learning Inc. family, which also includes the School for International Training (SIT), a global institution offering accredited undergraduate study abroad programs through SIT Study Abroad, and globally focused master’s degrees through SIT Graduate Institute.

The Experiment is also a founding member of Federation EIL, Inc. (, a 63-year-old independent non-profit that brings together a worldwide network of organizations based in 17 countries. Federation EIL members promote intercultural learning experiences through homestays, group travel, study abroad, language training, work exchange, and other cultural immersion programs.

The Experiment’s Founding Philosophy:


  • Go to learn, not to teach.
  • Expect the unexpected.
  • Turn a crisis into an adventure.
  • Learn to live together by living together.
  • Be quick to observe, slow to judge.

The Experiment Difference

History & Experience

In 1932, The Experiment's first group of students sailed for Europe with a mission of fostering peace through understanding, communication, and cooperation. They returned with a different outlook on the world and new leadership skills. Today, The Experiment continues to build on its 85 years of experience in international education through immersion.

Health, Safety, & Risk Management

Our comprehensive program structure maximizes the mental and physical well-being of participants before, during, and after the program.

Expertly Trained Leaders, Partners, & Staff

We offer outstanding student support from experienced adult group leaders, in-country partners, and Experiment staff in Vermont and Washington, D.C.

Group Structure

Experiment groups typically comprise 10-16 participants from diverse backgrounds, led by two expertly trained adult group leaders. This structure supports a student-centered learning approach in which the group experience is as important as the individual. Students gain a unique set of interpersonal skills that help them thrive in college and their future careers.

Diversity & Inclusion

We have the broadest socioeconomic, racial, ethnic, and geographic diversity of any high school study abroad program in the world. Our commitment to inclusion is supported by a broad coalition of partners and funders, ensuring we recruit the most promising young leaders.

Strong Connections with Partners Around the World

Longstanding relationships with international partner organizations, alumni, and donors enhance The Experiment’s ability to ensure safe, authentic, and culturally conscious experiences.

Thematic Program Design

Our program themes are relevant to students with a range of interests, such as environmental sustainability, language, politics, global issues, and the arts.

Intercultural Learning & Communication

We have a long tradition of building global communication skills through immersive activities that promote leadership and language acquisition as well as cross-cultural empathy, flexibility, and resilience.


Our carefully curated homestays provide students with meaningful experiences living in another culture and help them develop their language skills. The Experiment's international partners work year-round to vet and match participants with families, many of whom have worked with us for years.