The Global Visionaries leadership program is a transformational journey of leadership and self-discovery where youth enter as learners and leave as leaders. We prepare 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.

For participants in the Chicago metro area, GV offers an intensive program which workshops scheduled for 2 days prior to the two-week long 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 or fill out a request for more information here!

The application for the 2020-21 Evanston Program is now open! Apply here.

Application Deadline: December 30, 2020

Pre-Immersion Workshop: June 5 - June 6, 2021 (+/- 2 days)

Immersion: June 8 - June 21, 2020 (+/- 2 days)


PParents and students are required to attend a program orientation. At this orientation, former first year program participants and staff provide an overview of the first year program, review important dates and forms, and answer any questions you may have about the program. The orientation is typically held three days after acceptance announcements, in early December.


Students are expected to participate in fundraising for a portion of their own program fees. Global Visionaries works closely with youth and families to offer structured fundraising opportunities throughout the year.

Pre-Trip Workshop


Global Visionaries offers a condensed version of the year-long program each summer for participants living in the Evanston area. Instead of meeting monthly throughout the school year, Evanston and Chicago metro Intensive participants will cover all program curriculum during a two-day workshop prior to travel. 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.

After the workshop, intensive participants take part in the same immersion experience as the year-long participants.

International Service Work


Building on the foundation created in Evanston, youth work with the Guatemalan youth on the following projects:

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

You will be eligible for 32 hours of volunteer work after completion of the program.

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.

Program Fees: $3,290 + Estimated Airfare: $900

Total Program Cost: $4,190

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.

Household Income Financial Aid Total Program Cost
​$0-$15,000 $3,800-$3,650 $390-$540
$15,001-$20,000 ​$3,650-$3,500 $540-$690
​$20,001-$30,000 ​$3,500-$3,250 $690-$940
​$30,001-$40,000 ​$3,250-$3,000 $940-$1,190
​$40,001-$50,000 ​$3,000-$2,725 $1,190-$1,465
​$50,001-$60,000 ​$2,725-$2,450 $1,465-$1,740
$60,001-$70,000 ​$2,450-$2,150 ​$1,740-$2,040
​$70,001-$80,000 $2,150-$1,850 ​$2,040-$2,340
$80,001-$90,000 ​$1,850-$1,500 $2,340-$2,690
​$90,001-$100,000 $1,500-$1,150 $2,690-$3,040
​$100,001-$110,000 $1,150-$775 $3,040-$3,415
​$110,001-$150,000 $775-$400 ​$3,415-$3,790
​$150,001-$200,000+ $400-$0 ​$3,790-$4,190