Talk to alumni about Sea|mester and a few things are immediately evident. Bright and highly articulate, they are clearly motivated and independent, determined to travel their own path through life to make the most of the opportunities they have.

Seamester is a life changing program

They also uniformly say the same things about the program: that it took them out of their comfort zone and gave them a newfound confidence in their abilities.

That they realized they didn’t have to follow a pre-ordained path to success. That the passion, enthusiasm and dedication of their teachers and the staff for what they do was inspirational. The also tell is that they formed lasting bonds with their shipmates and have memories of an experience that will stay with them all their lives.

Case Studies & Testimonials

Barbara Bruce

It may seem a long way from spending nights in the Caribbean on an 88-ft schooner to working days as a financial analyst in the Investigative Division of the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, but that’s the journey Barbara made.

It’s a course Sea|mester helped her chart.

“I’d just completed my freshman year at Princeton and was operating on autopilot in the comfort zone of a small college campus.”

Sea|mester changed all that.

“It completely altered my perception of myself. Sea|mester had me trying things I’d never done before, and gave me real confidence in my ability to tackle challenges well beyond my comfort zone. I developed a totally new perspective and sense of motivation that sticks with me to this day. Our Captain used to tell us if we wanted to take a nap, save it for when we got home. This was the only time we were going to be in such an amazing place doing such amazing things.”

“I’d often sleep in a hammock on deck and get up at 5:45am so I could see the sunrise. And I’d wake up with such a terrific sense of excitement and energy that lasted throughout the day. I remember on our first night passage to Dominica, it was a 12-hour passage over really choppy water, and most of us were getting seasick. And I remember thinking that if I were just along for the ride I might have focused on how sick I felt, but instead I was entirely focused on the mission – it was incredible to be a part of the team that would bring Ocean Star safely to her destination that night. It didn’t hurt that the stars were beautiful along the way.”

“I still feel this heightened awareness of the possibilities of life, and I owe that to my summer with Sea|mester.”

Seamester Alumni Barbara Bruce

Michael Peraticos

Having just completed his Masters in Shipping, Trade and Finance at the University of London, Michael Peraticos decided he wanted to get away from the usual and mundane.

“I wanted to be outside life’s conventional four walls and distance myself from what I think of as stereotypical and unchallenged views of life. I wanted something radically different from what I had done so far, which was to continue straight from University into the Masters program. I wanted to live life to the fullest and try to understand myself.”

He found Sea|mester through a friend who had been on the program and he thought it would satisfy his desire to travel. He joined Argo in Tarragona south of Barcelona, sailed the Mediterranean, making stops in Gibraltar, Morocco, and then the Canary Islands to pick up supplies. Then it was off on a six-day sail through the Cape Verdi islands off the western coast of Africa before crossing the Atlantic to Dominica and finally ending the voyage in the British Virgin Islands.

“It was a profound and intense experience, unlike anything else I had lived. It is hard to describe it to others because you simply have to live certain things to understand them. But I remember a fellow crewmember of mine saying on the 90th day that he was sure that many changes have taken place but that it sometimes took time for them to appear and for you to understand them. We were 30 human beings co-existing within distinct physical boundaries. I think the spirit that existed with my shipmates was unprecedented for me. We grew to be very connected.”

Now in Athens working as a shipping consultant, he still feels that same connection to his shipmates.

“The experience that I lived on Sea|mester has certainly empowered me to live life how I see fit and made me believe all things are possible if you use your imagination.”

michael-peraticos

Mani White

Mani had never had a chance to do a semester abroad, so after graduation she decided it was time to pursue a dream. She had done some sailing in the San Francisco Bay, but had always wanted to know what it would be like to live, learn and travel aboard a boat.

“I didn’t want a cruise ship experience. A semester aboard should be more than a classroom with a waterfront view. Being a part of a working sailing ship was a different way of living and learning because everyone shares responsibility for what they bring to the moment. It’s an opportunity to grow with every minute.”

Mani was intrigued and signed up for the 40-day Ocean Star Caribbean voyage.

“My time with Sea|mester and my crewmates gave me training wheels on living a life without compromise. It opened my eyes to infinite possibilities and honed my ability to become the person I aspired to be.”

She found her calling. Two years later, Mani joined the crew of Argo on a 90-day voyage from the Mediterranean to the Caribbean.

“I remember one night on watch about two in the morning. A small pod of dolphins appeared in front of our bow wake. You couldn’t see them by any normal light, even moonlight – all you could see were the contours of their bodies flickering with phosphorescence, their wake trailing like fairy dust behind. It left me with a deep sense of wonder at Mankind’s tiny place in a vastly beautiful and diverse world.”

By the end of the trip she had achieved her goal of obtaining the Master of Yachts 200 ton theory in the hope of one day sailing her own vessel around the world. Now, that dream is coming true. Mani and her fiancé, Andrew, are hard at work building a Farrier-designed 32-ft Trimaran.

“It may take us six months, it may take us six years. But it’s something we’ll do.”

No one who sailed with Mani has the slightest doubt.

Seamester Alumni Mani White

  • Barbara Bruce
  • Michael Peraticos
  • Mani White
  • It may seem a long way from spending nights in the Caribbean on an 88-ft schooner to working days as a financial analyst in the Investigative Division of the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, but that’s the journey Barbara made.

    It’s a course Sea|mester helped her chart.

    “I’d just completed my freshman year at Princeton and was operating on autopilot in the comfort zone of a small college campus.”

    Sea|mester changed all that.

    “It completely altered my perception of myself. Sea|mester had me trying things I’d never done before, and gave me real confidence in my ability to tackle challenges well beyond my comfort zone. I developed a totally new perspective and sense of motivation that sticks with me to this day. Our Captain used to tell us if we wanted to take a nap, save it for when we got home. This was the only time we were going to be in such an amazing place doing such amazing things.”

    “I’d often sleep in a hammock on deck and get up at 5:45am so I could see the sunrise. And I’d wake up with such a terrific sense of excitement and energy that lasted throughout the day. I remember on our first night passage to Dominica, it was a 12-hour passage over really choppy water, and most of us were getting seasick. And I remember thinking that if I were just along for the ride I might have focused on how sick I felt, but instead I was entirely focused on the mission – it was incredible to be a part of the team that would bring Ocean Star safely to her destination that night. It didn’t hurt that the stars were beautiful along the way.”

    “I still feel this heightened awareness of the possibilities of life, and I owe that to my summer with Sea|mester.”

    Seamester Alumni Barbara Bruce

  • Having just completed his Masters in Shipping, Trade and Finance at the University of London, Michael Peraticos decided he wanted to get away from the usual and mundane.

    “I wanted to be outside life’s conventional four walls and distance myself from what I think of as stereotypical and unchallenged views of life. I wanted something radically different from what I had done so far, which was to continue straight from University into the Masters program. I wanted to live life to the fullest and try to understand myself.”

    He found Sea|mester through a friend who had been on the program and he thought it would satisfy his desire to travel. He joined Argo in Tarragona south of Barcelona, sailed the Mediterranean, making stops in Gibraltar, Morocco, and then the Canary Islands to pick up supplies. Then it was off on a six-day sail through the Cape Verdi islands off the western coast of Africa before crossing the Atlantic to Dominica and finally ending the voyage in the British Virgin Islands.

    “It was a profound and intense experience, unlike anything else I had lived. It is hard to describe it to others because you simply have to live certain things to understand them. But I remember a fellow crewmember of mine saying on the 90th day that he was sure that many changes have taken place but that it sometimes took time for them to appear and for you to understand them. We were 30 human beings co-existing within distinct physical boundaries. I think the spirit that existed with my shipmates was unprecedented for me. We grew to be very connected.”

    Now in Athens working as a shipping consultant, he still feels that same connection to his shipmates.

    “The experience that I lived on Sea|mester has certainly empowered me to live life how I see fit and made me believe all things are possible if you use your imagination.”

    michael-peraticos

  • Mani had never had a chance to do a semester abroad, so after graduation she decided it was time to pursue a dream. She had done some sailing in the San Francisco Bay, but had always wanted to know what it would be like to live, learn and travel aboard a boat.

    “I didn’t want a cruise ship experience. A semester aboard should be more than a classroom with a waterfront view. Being a part of a working sailing ship was a different way of living and learning because everyone shares responsibility for what they bring to the moment. It’s an opportunity to grow with every minute.”

    Mani was intrigued and signed up for the 40-day Ocean Star Caribbean voyage.

    “My time with Sea|mester and my crewmates gave me training wheels on living a life without compromise. It opened my eyes to infinite possibilities and honed my ability to become the person I aspired to be.”

    She found her calling. Two years later, Mani joined the crew of Argo on a 90-day voyage from the Mediterranean to the Caribbean.

    “I remember one night on watch about two in the morning. A small pod of dolphins appeared in front of our bow wake. You couldn’t see them by any normal light, even moonlight – all you could see were the contours of their bodies flickering with phosphorescence, their wake trailing like fairy dust behind. It left me with a deep sense of wonder at Mankind’s tiny place in a vastly beautiful and diverse world.”

    By the end of the trip she had achieved her goal of obtaining the Master of Yachts 200 ton theory in the hope of one day sailing her own vessel around the world. Now, that dream is coming true. Mani and her fiancé, Andrew, are hard at work building a Farrier-designed 32-ft Trimaran.

    “It may take us six months, it may take us six years. But it’s something we’ll do.”

    No one who sailed with Mani has the slightest doubt.

    Seamester Alumni Mani White

“The last three months has been one of the most amazing experiences of my life. It is not just all the places we see which are incredible or is it even sailing across the Atlantic, which was an amazing feat. But it is the people, the bonds we forged and all the moments that we shared.”
Brian S.
“This was an adventure of a lifetime. Not only did I travel and sail to some of the most beautiful, obscure and amazing places but I have 23 lifelong friends. I can honestly say coming to Argo was one of the best decisions I have ever made.”
Cameron B.
“This program not only opened my eyes to so much of the world that I have never seen before but it also opened my eyes to see the beauty that lies within us all. The relationships that I have made will be with me for years to come. This trip changed my perspective on the world and made me believe that I am capable of anything.”
Catherine B.
“My time on Sea|mester changed my life completely. It secured any thoughts on what I love and opened my mind to an entire world I didn't know before. My thanks are forever there. This is the greatest adventure I ever had.”
Dwight C.
“Sea|mester has changed my outlook on life. It has given me the knowledge that I can do anything I put my mind to. I have met amazing people and my time on board is something that is indescribable and unique. Thanks for everything!”
Elise H.

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