Celebrate, Reflect & Prepare For Re-Entry
Experiment programs provide high school students with countless opportunities to interact and engage with a new culture. Each program is also structured to give students the chance to reflect and process what they’re experiencing, especially near the program’s close.
Coming Full Circle
At the end of the program, Experimenters reflect on what they’ve done, the friendships they’ve made, the confidence they’ve attained, and the new skills they’ve learned. On most programs, the group comes full circle, literally and figuratively, in returning to the orientation location. This gives students an exciting opportunity to demonstrate their skills and knowledge in a city that once seemed unfamiliar but now feels comfortable and easier to navigate.
During the last few days of the program, the group might revisit neighborhoods and cultural or historical sites of interest from orientation. They might visit a completely new neighborhood or cultural attraction. On the last evening of the program, The Experiment groups typically celebrate by having a large, memorable group dinner.
Coming Home: Tips For Re-Entry
Students returning from an immersive experience abroad can sometimes experience reverse culture shock while readjusting to their daily lives back home. The reflection period on The Experiment programs is designed to help participants talk about this and prepare them for their return.
Group leaders facilitate conversations about going home and how that might feel. Questions for discussion might include:
- What are the things you’ve experienced this summer that you want to bring home?
- Do you feel different than when you arrived in the host country?
- What are some of the challenges you could face when coming home, such as how to describe the breadth and depth of experiences you’ve had to friends and family?
- What new skills, knowledge, friendships, and perspectives will you carry with you moving forward?
Thinking About The Future
A student’s Experiment isn’t over when the program concludes. We know from more than 75,000 alumni that the impact of The Experiment can be long-lasting and that students want to know how they can integrate what they’ve learned into their lives. That is why The Experiment programs conclude by helping participants think about and process their next steps related to the new knowledge, enthusiasm, friendships, language skills, and expanded worldview each participant has gained.
At the end of the program, each student fills out a program evaluation, which gives them another opportunity to share their feedback on the program and their overall experience.