Admission to Travel and Service Programs is limited, and not all campers who apply will be accepted. Our programs are unique experiences that challenge participants to work together as a team while exploring new places. All Travel and Service Programs are open to youth who are completing the 9th or 10th grade before the start of their TSP summer. When reviewing applications, we look for individuals who have demonstrated the following:
Applications for TSP are typically accepted from the end of July through mid-October. Please call our office at 413-623-8991 if you are interested in applying outside of this time frame.
Travel and Service Programs are first year leadership programs designed to help participants identify personal strengths and weaknesses and understand their role in a group. TSP facilitates program activities, written goal setting, and one-to-one mentor meetings with leaders to help guide participants towards stronger leadership skills.
In addition to Leadership Development, all TSP program focus on service and learning about new places. Participants must be open to working hard, trying new things, and fully engaging in the places they travel to.
All TSP programs have a range of physical and mental challenges. Depending on your program you may need to hike 3-4 miles, interact with people that don't speak your language, work a long day at a service project, or stay overnight by yourself in a homestay. It is important for participants and families to read through our online materials and learn about the differences between each of our programs so you can be prepared for your trip.
We are able to accommodate many health needs, but it is very important that parents discuss these with us in advance of the application deadline.
All TSP participants are responsible for their own personal belongings (including passports and money) while on program. Additionally, participants must have the ability to make good decisions, follow rules, and be aware of how one's actions affect others in the group.
The success of a program depends on many factors, but ultimately what you get out of a program depends on what you put into it. Your role and responsibility as a group member means being a positive contributor to your group, researching your destination ahead of time, and actively engaging with the people you meet and places you go.
TSP programs are wonderful opportunities for participants to learn independence. Alongside taking an active role in the group, participants are also asked to be aware of their personal health and needs. This means, staying hydrated, getting enough sleep, and talking to your leaders if you're feeling unwell. Additionally, TSP participants are responsible for managing their own medications. It's important that parents work with participants before the trip to ensure they're comfortable with this task.
A positive group dynamic is a large part of the TSP experience, but it is not something that happens by accident. Our trip leaders will work hard to support a healthy group and we expect for each participant to play an active role as well. That means, supporting one another, being inclusive, accepting differences, and contributing to group responsibilities.