Why Partner with Dragons?
Our partnership programs combine the best in experiential and classroom education.
A Greater Level of Engagement
Our experienced, well-trained field-staff collaborate directly with teachers and professors to develop original and organically designed programs. that consistently provide more profound opportunities for students. Recent research by the Study-Abroad industry has illuminated the fact that overseas learning experiences are dramatically more resonant when they are accompanied by a strong mentor relationship. Our field staff is composed of mature educators who have years of high-level personal and professional experience, and the skills needed to teach, guide, and empower students in profound ways. Having lived, worked, studied or volunteered overseas, our instructors are able to tap into their unique backgrounds, sharing with students the personal connections that they have made. With a pool of more than 1,000 field-staff, with a year-round presence in many of the countries in which we work, and with regional Program Houses – complete with stocked libraries and to which we attach regional support personnel, Dragons is able to connect students to uniquely rich learning experiences that are well beyond the scope of conventional tourism.
Tourism – the act of journeying to a new place for new experience and for pleasure – has it’s place; at Dragons, however, we provide experiences for the traveler, developing and stewarding meaningful encounters that evince Global Citizenship, that educate – profoundly, and that afford our students a deeper understanding of the human experience and their place within it. The depth of learning that we provide has been workshopped and practiced over hundreds of thousands of student days in the field. Teachers and administrators seeking to provide a comparable level of deep engagement would have to allocate exponentially more resources to source the contacts, develop the leadership and build the support systems that Dragons makes available.
How would you coordinate a home-stay in a remote part of the Andes, or arrange a meeting with the Dalai Lama, or source Arabic language instructors, or arrange to meet a dissident author in China? If you were to make every day of your students’ travel experience a brilliant learning opportunity, how would you structure an itinerary to ensure that each student’s needs and interests were being met? With administrators who speak over fifteen languages, with program-histories that span our twenty-three years in business, and with a pool of over experienced guides, we think forward, research, design and implement the richest available learning experiences so that teachers and administrators can enjoy their own experience.
A Safer Program
Dragons’ risk-mitigation begins in our marketing and admissions process, when we begin to tone-set the experience. Pre-course direction covers essentials in personal care, from inoculation recommendations to suggestions for preparing to work within a new cultural context. Instructors write letters to students and often visit a school to meet with concerned parents. Throughout our tone-setting process, we create the container for the course, wherein students feel safe entering their learning zone while respecting the safety limits drawn by the instructional staff and accompanying teachers. Our 72-hour safety plan begins when students first meet their instructors. Throughout the course, instructors communicate with our risk managers, and should an event occur which requires immediate attention, our on-call emergency response team is available 24/7. Finally, our instructors’ first-hand knowledge of in-country risk issues and medical facilities ensures that safety considerations are paramount in all aspects of course design and implementation.
Our program in Cambodia offered access to people and places I could not have otherwise experienced. Each day we engaged in meaningful human connections and profound experiences that changed the way we will talk about Global Studies. Overall, the program was a great success, and one of the best professional experiences of my life.
-David Medvitz, Technology Education – Pingree School