Cultural Immersion Program

Young Leaders, Global Impact

Through experiential activities, workshops, community service in Seattle (optional), and a cultural immersion to Guatemala, GV prepares Seattle-area high school students to define and address environmental and social justice issues in their communities while developing as leaders and becoming more aware of their global citizenship.

We offer three cohorts to accommodate all schedules.

Early Summer Program: June 30, 2021 – July 13, 2021 (+/- 2 days).

Mid Summer Program: July 20, 2021 – August 2, 2021 (+/- 2 days).

Late Summer Program: August 6, 2021 – August 19, 2021 (+/- 2 days).

*Please note that these dates are subject to change based on flight availability and pricing.

These programs have a two hour orientation and Pre-Immersion workshops scheduled on the three days prior to the Guatemala immersion. Once in Guatemala, participants live with a homestay family and work alongside teens from Guatemala on service projects. You will also have the opportunity to improve your Spanish language skills in daily language class, learn Salsa, and explore the history and culture of Guatemala.

If you have any questions contact us at or fill out a request for more information here!

Apply Here!

See below for a complete 2020-21 program calendar for each of GV's program cohorts.

Early Summer Cohort Mid Summer Cohort Late Summer Cohort
Early Bird Deadline             ($100 Off ) October 19, 2020 October 19, 2020 October 19, 2020
Application Deadline November 30, 2020 November 30, 2020 November 30, 2020
Acceptance Notification December  4, 2020 December  4, 2020 December  4, 2020
Orientation* TBD  TBD  TBD
Fundraising Workshop # 1 (optional) TDB TBD TBD
Fundraising Workshop # 2 (optional) TBD TBD TBD
Fundraising Workshop # 3 (optional) TBD TBD TBD
Volunteer Day (opt. 1) TBD TBD TBD
Volunteer Day (opt. 2) TBD TBD TBD
Volunteer Day (opt. 3) TBD TBD TBD
Volunteer Day (opt. 4) TBD TBD TBD
Pre-departure Meeting* TBD TBD TBD
Pre-immersion Workshop TBD TBD TBD
Immersion** June 30 - July 13, 2021 June 20 - August 2, 2021 August  6 - 19, 2021
Storytelling Potluck  TBD  TBD TBD

*Parents and participants and required to attend this meeting.

**These dates are subject to change +/- 2 days as a result of fluctuations in air ticket prices and/or school closures (snow days). We will communicate changes in the immersion dates as soon as available.


Parents and students are required to attend a program orientation. At this orientation, former program participants and staff provide an overview of the Cultural Immersion Program, review important dates and forms, and answer any questions you may have about the program.


Global Visionaries works closely with youth and families to provide structured fundraising opportunities. These opportunities include: Guatemalan Coffee, Guatemalan Cookbook, and GV Reusable Mug sales, along with Wreath & Garland sales in the winter and Letter Writing campaigns year-round. GV staff will support you to raise 30% or more of your program fees.

Three-day Workshop

The workshop introduces participants to systematic oppression, environmental conservation, global citizenry, and Guatemalan culture and history. See the "Important Program Dates" tab above for exact workshop and travel dates.

Local Service Work

Participants are able to earn 12+ volunteer hours through optional local service work before the cultural immersion experience in Guatemala. We offer multiple dates for service work throughout the year in partnership with our local partner organizations, such as Seattle Tilth & EarthCorps.

International Service Work

Building on the foundation created by the local service performed in Seattle, youth work with the Guatemalan youth on the following projects:

  • Coffee farming tour
  • Reforestation projects
  • Long-term care hospital support
  • School and community center construction work

Overall, participants will earn 32 service hours during the Guatemala immersion.

Spanish Lessons

Spanish school is a great way to learn more about Guatemalan culture while improving communication. Each participant will have their own teacher who teaches at their level. Spanish school is 3 hours after lunch every day for the first 5 days. Overall, participants gain over 150 hours of language immersion through homestays, work teams, and cultural excursions with Guatemalan youth participants.


While in Guatemala, each participant and one or two of their group-mates will stay with a local Guatemalan family in their home. Homestay families cook and provide traditional Guatemalan food for the students. The homestay brings participants closer to the Guatemalan culture and is often one of the most impactful immersion experiences for youth.

Fun & Adventure

Participants will also have the chance to see Mayan ruins, take a trip to Antigua, Guatemala, and loosen up with Salsa dance lessons.

We are now accepting application for the 2020-21 & 2021-2022 Cultural Immersion Programs.

Click HERE to apply!

Apply by October 19th to receive $100 of your program cost!

Cultural Immersion Program Application Steps:

-Complete the application by the application deadline.

-Complete the student applicant interview by the application deadline.

-Submit your deposit by the application deadline. These deposits will go toward your program fees if accepted to the program and will be returned to you within 30 business days if you are not accepted to the program.

-If requesting financial aid, please submit your most current IRS tax forms (1040 or other)You will have the option to upload a digital copy of your financial information in the application.

Recommended: Attend a Virtual Information Night to learn more about the program

$50 for those requesting financial aid
$250 for those not requesting financial aid
To pay via Debit/Credit Card or eCheck Click Here

Mail: You can also mail application materials (Tax Forms, Deposits, etc.) to the corresponding address:

"Global Visionaries Program Application (Applicant’s Name Here)" 2524 16th Ave. S, RM 206, Seattle, WA 98144

All application materials must be received by the application deadline.

If you have any questions, please email

Upcoming Information Nights for Virtual & Immersion Programs!

September 29, 2020 at 6:00-7:30 PM
October 7, 2020 at 6:00-7:30 PM
October 15, 2019 at 6:00-7:30 PM

RSVP To a Virtual Information Night

Please schedule an interview at your school with one of the teachers listed below as soon as possible. Waiting until the last minute will put your chance of getting an interview at risk. After your interview, the teacher will return an interview form to us.

If you do not attend one of the schools listed below, please call Global Visionaries at (206) 322-9448 or email us to schedule an interview with one of our program staff at our office.

Ballard High School:

Vanessa Lopez, Spanish Teacher

Eileen Yardley, Spanish Teacher

Chief Sealth High School:

Pedro Lopez-Chavez, Immersion Program & Social Studies Teacher

Cleveland High School:

Paige Wakamatsu, Math Teacher

Franklin High School:

Olivia Geffner, Social Studies Teacher

Garfield High School:

Gretchen Sloan, Spanish Teacher

Ingraham High School:

Sarah Kerr

Noah Zeichner

John F. Kennedy Catholic High School:

Jenny Farrell, Director of Campus Ministry

Mercer Island High School:

Chris Twombley, English Teacher

Mount Rainier High School:

Marlene Mersch, Spnaish Teacher

Nathan Hale High School:

Marni Balint

Rainier Beach High School:


Roosevelt High School:

Erika R Ahlstrom, Spanish Teacher

Jeanne McGuire, Spanish Teacher

Shorewood High School:

Brenda Gilman, Librarian

Amanda Stoker, Spanish Teacher

West Seattle High School:

Anne Eades, Spanish Teacher

Laura McCarthy, Spanish Teacher

The information below will help you estimate your total program cost.

Program cost is based on a sliding scale in order to increase equity and accessibility of our program. Our scale is base on program cohort, household income, and family size.

While we cannot guarantee a specific amount of financial aid, we are committed to working with every family to make our program accessible and affordable. Please contact our program staff, to discuss your situation, even if you feel that you do not qualify for financial aid.

If parents are separated or divorced, and you are applying for financial aid, please provide financial information for the person who claims the child on their tax forms.

Cultural Immersion Program Cost

Program Fees: $3,350 + Estimated Airfare: $1000

Total Program Cost: $4,350

The table below estimates financial aid amount and program cost based on household income.

Family Income

 Estimated Scholarship Package

 Estimated Program Cost + Airfare








































 $200,000 - $ 250,000



Enhance your Global Visionaries’ journey by participating in both the virtual and immersion programs.

Save up to $780 by bundling both the Virtual & Immersion Programs.

Priority acceptance to the Immersion Program and to your cohort preference.

Click below to learn more!

Bundle Virtual & Immersion Programs


Global Visionaries works closely with youth and families to provide structured fundraising opportunities. These opportunities include: Guatemalan Coffee, Guatemalan Cookbook, and GV Reusable Mug sales, along with Wreath & Garland sales in the winter and Letter Writing campaigns year-round. GV staff will support you to raise 30% or more of your program fees.

Global Visionaries believes in student-led fundraising because: 1) fundraising empowers youth to take ownership of their experience, and 2) fundraising lifts the financial burden off of parents.

Please join us at a Fundraising Workshop to learn more about what options are available to you. See the "Important Program Dates" tab for details.

All participants who complete the Cultural Immersion Program are eligible to apply for the Advanced Leadership Program.

For more information about the Advanced Program, click here.