Gleaning and Growing

Being in high school in 2016 isn’t simple. Keeping up with everything from music lessons to sports practice to SAT tutoring and staying on top of college admissions make it easy to lose sight of the bigger picture. After all, school is only one part of what it takes to be a well-rounded person. So in 2000 educator Suzanne Lettrick founded the Global Education and Action Network (GLEAN) to help fill in the gaps. The Mill Valley–based organization helps facilitate trips for students that expose them to remote cultures around the world for several months at a time. The expeditions are designed using the GLEAN method that promotes lifelong learning and focuses on data collection and quantitative research abroad. Each trip is centered around a topic a student would like to study and involves interviews with key people and documentation of lifestyles. The average cost for airfare and expedition is $8,000. In the past students have researched cultures in Mongolia, China, Siberia, India, Botswana, South Africa and Nicaragua.