NOLS, as it’s known, teaches leadership via remote wilderness explorations. Their courses range from 10 days long to a full academic year, for students as young as 14—and there is no maximum age. For younger students, most summer trips are Stateside: backpacking in Wyoming or through the Pacific Northwest, a salmon river adventure in Idaho, canoeing in the Adirondacks. For older high school and college-age students, there are more international offers, like sea kayaking in Scandinavia, or backpacking in Australia.

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