The 4 key elements of the Baret Scholars program are meticulously crafted to offer a sense of structure within a realm of freedom.
In every region, we will bring expert speakers, thinkers, performing artists, and leaders to inspire a nuanced understanding of the world they’re exploring and the lives they’re planning: like a traveling TED. Every month as students transition to a new region, the Morning Program will shift its focus, dedicating itself to unraveling the intricacies of that specific culture. From the rich history and traditions to contemporary advancements and challenges, it will be their intellectual compass, the spine of their gap year experience.
Students choose how to spend afternoons, evenings, and their long weekends. They can volunteer at a local NGO, teach or learn a language, assist a fellow with research, explore neighboring towns and cities, form interest groups, watch films about the region, or pick a book from our reading list. They will never be at a loose end. Nothing is forced - but everything is on the table. We make sure that our students will always have exciting, safe and well-researched options, enabling them to experientially engage with the city, its people, its problems, and people working to solve these problems.
Traveling with the 180 Baret Scholars will be 15, full-time, carefully chosen advisors who come from all corners of the globe and are experts in all corners of life. We call them Fellows. Each Fellow will serve 12 students, meet them as a group everyday, and one-on-one every week. Modeled after the Oxford/Cambridge tutorial system, these sessions provide students with the guidance they need, life design techniques, and inspiration for their independent projects. Fellows help students plan to get the most from their coming college experience and imminent adult lives.
In each region, students will choose how they spend their last 10 days. A panoply of opportunities will be given to them, all educationally themed and led by Fellows. In small groups of 12, they will go off-the beaten-path to pursue their interests, develop skills, and discover the region. Over the year, they might trek the Appalachians, examine the biodiversity of the Amazon, walk the pilgrimage of the Camino de Santiago, discover the future of urban planning in Saudi Arabia, create art in Nigeria, help preserve the endangered world of India’s Royal Bengal Tiger, and engage with entrepreneurs in Shenzhen.
Life presents to us precious windows into creativity, transformation, and self-discovery. Rarely convenient, these portals to growth close as quickly as they appear. For most, that moment lies between the end of high school and the beginning of college. There is a chance, perhaps a last chance, to get off the often spirit-killing march that goes from early youth all the way to post college employment. This book is about the unique period that recent high school graduates possess and the importance of seizing it.
Across the year, we help each student think through their college time which lies ahead. Each student completes the Baret year with a personalized, purposeful college plan.
Baret experience will be viewed by interviewers as something distinct from virtually every other competing applicant, as companies increasingly seek team members with extensive international awareness and experience.
Baret allows students to become real citizens of this planet and geographers in the broader sense of the word, understanding not just maps, but the human constructed phenomena going on within those lines.
When in their home regions, Baret participants will act as hosts or cultural interpreters for their visiting Baret colleagues. As they help them understand their home country, they learn too.
Baret graduates will be highly sought after as they begin their college careers with maturity and a wholly different set of experiences, enhancing their chances of admission into more prestigious colleges.
Baret students will be drawn from every region of the world, and some number of those students will become lifetime friends. Baret plans an extensive alumni program to keep its graduates in touch.
Each Baret cohort will include those with a wide range of interests. There will be coders, artists, musicians, budding entrepreneurs. All students will be highly encouraged to advance existing or newly discovered interests.
Baret is a way to accelerate the student’s possibility of understanding their old self while creating who they want to become, an opportunity for growth and discovery.