Second Semester Individual Internships

LEAPNOW maintains an unparalleled database of over 6,100 internships, volunteer options, work exchanges and apprenticeships which are available only to LEAPYEAR and LEAPYEAR2 students. We have amassed this database through travel, networking and research since 1977, and it is one of the most comprehensive of its kind in the world.

The internship is an incredible opportunity to explore an interest in depth or “try on” a field you are considering majoring in college or doing for a living

The breadth of these options allows us to ask questions that are asked far too rarely in educational environments: "If you could wave your magic wand, what would you most like to do? What learning environment would bring you most alive? What’s the "juiciest" thing you can conceive of doing for 3 months?"

In his book, "Drive," Daniel Pink identified three elements of true motivation: 1) autonomy, the desire to direct our own lives, 2) mastery, the desire to continually improve at something that matters, and 3) purpose, the desire to do things in service of something larger than ourselves. These elements are too often completely missing from traditional schooling, but are integral to the LEAPYEAR individual internship.

Individual Internships allow you to:

  • Explore an interest in depth and "try on" a field you are considering majoring in college or doing for a living
  • Live and volunteer just about anywhere in the world
  • Immerse yourself in a culture and gain language fluency
  • Choose and control your learning environment, perhaps for the first time
  • Serve others, "give back," and be the change you wish to see in the world.
  • Benefit from a traveling community - with regular communication with up to 30 others who are doing parallel adventures and the LEAPNOW staff
  • Have the independent adventure of a lifetime

The LEAPYEAR internship is NOT intended for wandering, pursuit of distraction or recreation, or simply touring around. It's a chance to further your development and evolution as a human being. The internship begins three days after and builds naturally on the formal Rite of Passage at the end of Third Retreat, allowing you to "enact" adulthood in real and profoundly meaningful way.

Please note that the internships available to LEAPYEAR students number in the thousands and range across 126 countries, including the United States. Here are some of the thousands that are offered:

  • Work with children just about anywhere in the world - in schools, orphanages, on the streets, in refugee camps and other settings,
  • Medical work outside of the United States - in Ecuador, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Africa, and many other locations,
  • Alternative healing internships: herbalism, Ayurveda, bodywork, etc.,
  • Building construction in the U.S and many other countries – conventional, sustainable and alternative methods. Build treehouses in Japan,
  • Work on organic farms throughout the world - Australia, NZ, Africa, Asia, Latin America, the U.S, Europe, and the Caribbean,
  • Work with animals in the U.S., Australia, Bolivia, Ecuador, Kenya, South Africa, India, Argentina, Nepal, and other countries. Work with elephants, primates, pumas, birds, sea turtles, penguins, musk oxen, baby baboons, horses and farm animals, Great White Sharks, and more,
  • Arts & crafts study and apprenticeship in Latin America, India, Africa, Europe, Canada, and Asia. Blacksmithing, jewelry-making, glass blowing, weaving, print-making, fashion design,
  • Work with scientists - ecology, botany, marine science, forestry, archaeology, anthropology and more,
  • Work with midwives in Latin America, Indonesia, Africa and elsewhere,
  • Spiritual study: yoga retreats, ashrams, meditation, etc.,
  • Hotel management internships, work in chateaus in France, retreat center internships. Work at intentional & sustainable communities throughout the world,
  • Political internships in the UK, Australia & Switzerland,
  • SCUBA dive internships in the Galapagos, the Caribbean, the Gulf of Thailand, and on the Great Barrier Reef,
  • Work with women's issues and women's empowerment groups throughout the world,
  • Serve people with disabilities, the very poor, the dying, the blind or deaf, the homeless and those who are autistic or developmentally delayed,
  • Language immersion and homestays throughout the world,
  • Historical restoration,
  • Work with indigenous people in the U.S. and abroad, work on remote Pacific islands,
  • Teach at outdoor education centers in the U.S. and New Zealand, and lead treks in the Guatemalan highlands,
  • Apprentice in recording studios or work with filmmakers or photographers,
  • Study marine science, support the UN in Switzerland, cook in a kibbutz kitchen in Israel, and teach English to Tibetan Buddhist monks & nuns,
  • Study drumming and dance in Ghana and Tanzania,
  • Teaching tennis in Barcelona or coach soccer in India,
  • Do tsunami relief work in Indonesia,

Learn more about how LEAPYEAR students choose their Individual Internship.

"Adventure is a path. Real adventure – self-determined, self-motivated, often risky – forces you to have firsthand encounters with the world. The world the way it is, not the way you imagine it. Your body will collide with the earth and you will bear witness. In this way you will be compelled to grapple with the limitless kindness and bottomless cruelty of humankind – and perhaps realize that you yourself are capable of both. This will change you. Nothing will ever again be black-and-white."
― Mark Jenkins