The Global Citizenship Academy (GCA) is a response to the growing complexities—and immense opportunities—of the 21ˢᵗ century.
Aided by technology and magnified by our expanding population, humanity’s ability to impact the planet increases daily. Likewise, as our collective influence grows, so too does the power and faculty of the individual. In recognizing the potential of such individuals, the GCA has been designed to magnify their capacity as agents of change who can effectively implement strategic, sustained, and far-reaching solutions to address the world’s most pressing social and environmental concerns.
More specifically, our goal is to create an unrivaled enrichment center that serves as a hub to connect and support exceptional students and leaders from around the world. Furthermore, our eight-month, tuition-free program will provide students with the skills, resources, and influential networks needed to increase their capacity to advance high-impact policies and programs; both within their own nations and beyond.
To attract such an internationally distinguished cohort, the GCA will remove all financial barriers to access while simultaneously ensuring students benefit from an unsurpassed gap year education. Additionally—and strategically—it will be the framing of this program in the context of an immersive gap year that will create the unique temporal conditions required to unite, inform, and empower these future global leaders.
As a foundation, the Global Citizenship Academy will remain a lifelong resource to its graduates and affiliates by serving as a nexus that actively maintains and builds connections between its cohorts, sister schools, and third parties. Sustained through the GCA's emphasis on community cohesion and cooperation, these multi-generational networks are certain to prove invaluable assets that allow alumni to greatly extend the breadth and magnitude of their impact.
Once established, the Global Citizenship Academy's value-based non profit structure, in combination with its numerous internal financial mechanisms, will will enable it to finance an additional enrichment center every seven years.
Although this is a long-term approach, we believe the most effective way to benefit those most in need is through networking, empowering, and supporting those rare individuals who share a desire—and ability—to tangibly address the root cause of complex issues such as inequality, conflict, disease, and environmental degradation. In this way, contributions to the GCA constitute high-impact ethical investments that will enable a powerful tool for advancing global well-being.
However, to realize this project we will require supporters.
Financially our request is modest but your assistance is essential.
The Global Citizenship Academy’s flagship initiative is its eight-month Global Gap Year Enrichment Program (GGYEP), which will unite 120 outstanding students from across the globe and immerse them in a unparalleled learning environment.
Strategically, the GGYEP has been developed to capitalize on the prospect of taking a gap year and thus delaying immediate entry to college. This 'gap' is a critical—and often missed—period when students are unencumbered, energetic, curious, and therefore primed to benefit from immersive and formative learning experiences. In recognizing and leveraging this unique opportunity, the GCA will be able to select some of the most outstanding students from around the world and endow them with the skills, networks, and resources needed to magnify their success in college; their productivity in their professional lives; and ultimately, their impact as responsible global leaders.
The Global Gap Year Enrichment Program will provide students with a broad foundational understanding, will accelerate their skill acquisition, and will increase their capacity to catalyse meaningful change that is in alignment with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals. Notably, the curriculum’s rigorous and accredited college-level academics will prioritize interdisciplinary and problem-based learning; systems level thinking; and independent inquiry. These techniques will then be utilized through experiential learning modules and active participation in on campus democratic governance, which will ensure students develop a proficiency in planning, negotiation, voting, and councils.
The GGYEP’s permanent courses will include: political science, history, economics, the sciences, sociology, philosophy, cultural studies, literature, wellness/fitness, and the arts. Additionally, and in recognition of its unique enrollment, the GGYEP will prioritize the development of each student’s individual interests by financially supporting self-directed learning projects, internships, and attendance at conferences and workshops. Also, by leveraging its digital infrastructure and extensive resources, the GGYEP will aim to to accommodate individual student requests by retaining instructors who can teach remotely.
The greatest asset of the GGYEP will be its distinguished and globally representative enrollment, which is a recent reality made possible through the growing universality of English as an international language. Strategically, these accomplished students (i.e., high academic achievement, exemplary communication skills, self-determination, leadership, a history of service to others) will be positioned to build meaningful relationships between inspiring peers, which will establish vital links between the developed and developing world and will also serve to challenge and sustain these students as they strive to realize their fullest potential and initiate meaningful global change.
Similar in intention to the Global Gap Year Enrichment Program, the GCA will offer an at-cost Local Leadership Enrichment Program, which is designed to empower local students with the capacity to become agents of positive change within their region while also serving to build strong relations between the GCA and its immediate community.
Ultimately, through its unique ability to unite a global cohort of remarkable students and current leaders, in combination with the GGYEP's innovative programming, robust resources, acclaimed staff, and accredited academics, the Global Gap Year Enrichment Program is poised to become an internationally recognized program celebrated for its distinct ability to develop leaders capable of responding to the world's most pressing social and environmental problems.
After assessing regions based on their cultural, linguistic, historical, and climatic influences, the GCA is poised to locate its first enrichment center in Europe.
Our purpose-built and semi-rural campus will offer a calm, yet dynamic, space designed to best promote focused learning and creative endeavours. And although intentionally removed from the daily distractions of a large urban environment, the GCA will ensure it remains within close proximity so it can benefit from the resources such metropolitan areas afford.
Onsite, facilities will include: five large high-technology classrooms, a library, an auditorium/cinema, four studios (music, art, fitness, mindfulness/worship), a technical workshop, a learning kitchen, an integrated farm, dining facilities, extensive landscaped grounds, and modern student residences designed to promote socialization.
Students will also benefit from the GGYEP’s regular off-site excursions, which will provide opportunities to attend conferences, workshops, seminars and to engage in academically focused travel.
The GCA's integrated farm is intended to complement the kitchen, subsidize operational costs, facilitate community engagement, and to offer physical and intellectual nourishment. An additional aim of this practice is to introduce our future leaders to the natural world with the aim of cultivating an ethic of environmental care.
Staff and students will also be expected to commit 5 hrs/wk towards maintaining the Academy through governance, cooking, planting, harvesting, and cleaning.
As advocates of sustainable development the GCA is committed to investing in ecologically responsible buildings, organic farming practices, clean energy, and conscientious waste disposal.
Echoing the words of Margaret Mead, we truly believe that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.
We also believe in the GCA's unique capacity to catalyze, accelerate, and amplify this process by attracting, connecting, and informing the world's current and future global leaders.
Admirably, it will be the Global Citizenship Academy's innovative value-based, non profit structure that will enable it to realize robust resources, to offer tuition-free admission, and to develop an unsurpassed enrichment program.
Additionally, beyond its efficacy in uniting exceptional students from around the world, it is our conviction in the power of 'paying it forward' that inspired us to offer tuition-free enrollment. For when deserving people are given a gift, as a reward for hard work, they tend to develop a sense of appreciation and gratitude, which is likely to manifest—and multiply—itself in good deeds to others. The power of this approach is that it can generate exponential growth. Ultimately, as a substantial number of these students will be poised to realize positions of power and influence, the long-term contributions from this way of thinking promises to be significant.
Once established, the GCA's value-based approach, in conjunction with its numerous internal financial mechanisms, promises to provide full financial independence and will enable the building of an additional enrichment centers every seven years.