Who We Are

The Experiment in International Living is the nation’s most experienced and respected provider of international education and experiential learning for high school students. For 85 years, our summer study abroad programs have allowed participants to explore the world in a personal, meaningful way, and to develop new, enduring friendships through hands-on cultural experiences and homestays in 28 countries. With specific themes to match student’s unique interests and passions, The Experiment believes in creating educational experiences that positively impact both students and the communities they visit. Each year, hundreds of students come away from The Experiment with invaluable cultural, leadership, language, and college-prep skills that help them thrive in diverse environments.

The Experiment is the flagship program of World Learning (worldlearning.org), a nonprofit organization working to empower people and communities, and strengthen institutions around the world through education, sustainable development, and exchange programs. Over more than eight decades, World Learning has built on The Experiment’s success to become a thriving global nonprofit organization that includes The Experiment, School of International Training (SIT) Graduate Institute, SIT Study Abroad, and sustainable development programs in more than 100 countries.

The Experiment’s Founding Philosophy:

  • Go to learn, not to teach.
  • Expect the unexpected.
  • Turn a crisis into an adventure.
  • Learn to live together by living together.
  • Be quick to observe, slow to judge.


The Experiment Difference

  • History & Experience
    More than 85 years of experience in international education and experiential learning. The Experiment is part of World Learning, a global organization that supports educational development in 150 countries.
  • Health, Safety, & Risk Management
    Programs follow a comprehensive structure designed to maximize the mental and physical well-being of participants before, during, and after the program.
  • Highly Trained Leaders, Partners, & Staff
    Outstanding student support from experienced adult group leaders, in-country partners, and Experiment staff in Vermont and Washington, D.C., all of whom contribute to the educational and immersive nature of our programs.
  • Group Structure
    Small and diverse groups, typically comprising 10-16 participants from various backgrounds, led by two carefully selected and trained adult group leaders, as well as a network of in-country support to create a safe, student-centered learning approach.
  • Diversity & Inclusion
    We maintain the broadest socioeconomic, racial, ethnic, and geographic diversity of any high school study-abroad program in the world. Our commitment to diversity and inclusion is supported by a broad coalition of partners and funders that ensures we recruit the most promising young leaders from around the globe.
  • Strong Connections with Partners Around The World
    Longstanding relationships with international partner organizations, alumni, and donors enhance The Experiment’s programs to ensure safe, authentic, and culturally conscious experiences.
  • Thematic Program Design
    Themes relevant to students with a variety of interests, including sustainability and the environment; arts and social change; language and cultural discovery; leadership training; and peace, politics, and human rights.
  • Intercultural Learning & Communication
    A long tradition of building skills in intercultural learning and communication through immersive activities that promote leadership and language acquisition as well as cross-cultural empathy, flexibility, and resilience.
  • Homestays
    Homestays designed to provide meaningful experiences living in another culture, carefully curated by our international partners who work diligently year-round to vet and match participants with the best possible families, many of whom have worked with us for decades.
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