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It would be a grand understatement to say that Class Afloat was the best thing that I ever did.
It would be a grand understatement to say that Class Afloat was the best thing that I ever did. To have had the experience at a young age, I could not be more thankful. By the numbers, my once-in-a-lifetime experience consisted of 145 days at sea travelling 14,914 nautical miles to explore 13 countries. I can wholeheartedly say that Class Afloat was instrumental in shaping the person that I grew up to be. I fell deeper in love with the ocean blue and learned how to live every day as it ought to be spent, focusing on what matters most in our lives, the people around us. Because of Class Afloat, I now truly understand that 'love doesn't make the world go 'round, but it makes the ride worthwhile.' Although stepping off the gangway for the final time seemed like a forever kind of goodbye, my Class Afloat experiences are undoubtedly always with me; there is not a day that goes by without a moment of nostalgia or a daydream of the life at sea.
- Chloe Gustavson, S/V Concordia Crew, 2007-2008, Vancouver, B.C
Class Afloat is a truly unique, once in a lifetime opportunity
The learning outcomes that students gain during this program are not achievable via a text book or a classroom on solid ground. Class Afloat is a truly unique, once in a lifetime opportunity, that will end up being the best experience of your life, hands down.
- Marc Lehodey, Alumni Student, 2009 & 2011, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
The fourth regrets her decision not to go
When we grew up parents needed to teach their children manners and give them an education, but today parents need to do both those things and introduce their children to the world. Three of our four children spent a year on Class Afloat and had incredible experiences. The fourth regrets her decision not to go.
- Bob Lehodey, Alumni Parent, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
I miss climbing to the royal in plain night
I miss climbing to the royal in plain night, watching the stars and the reflection of the moon from the horizon to the ship, no land in sight anywhere around for miles, hearing the calm crash of the waves on the hull with a slight rocking, the wind on my face. All of that fulfilling me and reminding me of what complete happiness feels like.
- Arturo Madero, Alumni Student, 2010-2011, Mexico City, Mexico
It has given me a vision of the world as a whole
There hasn't been one single day since my Class Afloat experience that hasn't been shaped or affected by it. Class Afloat has taught me the real meaning of responsibility, team work, leadership and the importance and possibility to overcome limits and boundaries in life. It has given me a vision of the world as a whole and gave me the ability to make any place my home. I know that Class Afloat continues to determine who I am as an individual and my role in the world, and still remains the most significant experience in my life.
- Elisa Marino, Alumni Student, 2003, Alumni Crew, 2008, Italy
Class Afloat changed my entire life!
Class Afloat changed my entire life! It redefined my perception of what's possible. It introduced me to the world, making me feel like a true global citizen and showing me different ways of life. It took me to some of the most beautiful places on our planet - where I hiked through lush jungles to majestic waterfalls, slept under the stars on a white sand beach of a completely uninhabited island, spent hours watching dolphins frolic in the bow-waves, and dove in some of the most vibrant reefs. But, most importantly, it taught me to be part of a crew and connected me with life-long friends. I hold my experience with Class Afloat very close to my heart.
- Amy Taylor, Alumni Student, 2000, Spain
Class Afloat in 1990 has left a lasting mark on my life
The 6 months I spent at sea as a midshipman with Class Afloat in 1990 has left a lasting mark on my life, both personally and professionally. Life at sea taught me patience, teamwork, and persistence in a way that I have not seen matched in my 25-year career as a leader and educator. Equally important, experiencing other cultures on four continents provided me with a depth of understanding and enriched world view that has benefited me time and time again throughout my life.
- Peter Labor, Alumni Crew, Hubbards, Nova Scotia, Canada
Class Afloat has been a huge part of our family's life
Class Afloat has been a huge part of our family's life. Three of our four children did their grade 12 year on Class Afloat and the one who chose not to now regrets her decision. To sail around the world on a tall ship while completing high school is a once in a lifetime experience! It gave our children a huge boost in organizational skills as they learned how to fulfil their duties as crew on a tall ship and keep up with their grade 12 studies . I think the transition from high school to university has been easier for them because of it. They have come away from their Class Afloat experience much more mature and independent . They have made strong friendships and will share amazing memories with their fellow "Floaties" of their time spent together on the Concordia and Sorlandet for life. And the rest of the family? We have had wonderful family holidays centred around the ship's departures and arrivals in interesting ports around the world and have formed our own friendships along the way.
- Tracy Beaumont, Alumni Parent, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Class Afloat taught my children about the world
The Class Afloat experience was tremendously enriching for both my children and myself. The transformation I saw in my children was incredible. By being exposed to different cultures and peoples in their daily life on board and during the many well chosen school excursions, they gained maturity and perspective on the world. Learning how to balance academics, ship work, sleep, and social time gave them a new awareness of their capabilities, and prepared them for an easy transition to university. The school administration was wonderful in keeping parents up to date and informed on the student's activities and well-being. With an excellent crew, online ship tracker, and frequent e-mails, even the most nervous parents could sleep well. Class Afloat taught my children about the world, sailing, and different cultures. But most importantly, it taught them about themselves. With the skills they developed over the course of the year, I am confident that my children will be ready to face any challenge that comes their way.
- Cheryl Bilbe, Alumni Parent, Bow, New Hampshire, USA
Class Afloat shaped me, it enabled me
When you think about yourself in 5 years from now, or even 10. What do you see? Do you see an individual who has been shaped to conquer society? An individual who has a mindset with little to no fears; do you see yourself as a strong minded, morally bound, goal setter? Class Afloat shaped me, it enabled me, it introduced me to the limitless realm of the world. It proved that no matter what life throws at me, I have the core foundations to conquer it and succeed. Not only are you going to embark on one of the most incredible journeys of your life but also you will be sailing down a road that will never end. The fundamentals I learned on Class Afloat have driven me into a career, many new friendships and a brand new outlook on life that is void of any limitation. Class Afloat proved to me that I could do anything that I put my mind too and surrounded me with foreign cultures, duties and a level of enjoyment I will never be able to replace. If you want to follow your dreams and set sail on the biggest opportunity of your life, I wouldn’t look any further. I can truly say Class Afloat changed my life for the better and shaped who I am today.
- Graham Sullivan, Alumni Student, 2011-2012 , Singapore