High School in Australia

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  • Overview

    Welcome to Australia!

    Greenheart Travel’s high school program in Australia provides the opportunity to participate in exciting school-based activities such as drama productions, music bands, weekend sports, and adventure activities while immersing yourself in the Aussie way of life. Learn to speak Australian slang and try a bit of Vegemite in a friendly community set in one of South Australia’s unique regional landscapes. Experience life in the land down under and start your High School Australia application today!

    Program at a Glance:

    • Host family accommodation will provide a full cultural immersion experience
    • No foreign language experience required — they speak English!
    • Program fee includes flights, accommodation & lots more!
    • You can choose between trimester, semester or academic year lengths
    • A straightforward online application process

    What do our alumni say about their experience in Australia?

    To say the least, this trip was life changing for me! On a typical weekday after school, I would go to the footy club for training with friends from school or we would hang out with someone at either their house or mine. Weekends involved lots of surfing and bodyboarding, going to different festivals in the city, or going to beach parties through my church youth group from a church. Not once did I feel homesick or regret my decision!” — Jake, high school abroad alumni

  • Program Dates

    Dates subject to change.

    Fall 2019 Dates

    Applications are now closed. Please apply for a 2020 start date.

    • Trimester: Late July 2019 – Mid December 2019
    • Semester: Late July 2019 – Mid December 2019

    Exact dates will be provided closer to your start date!

    Spring 2020 Dates

    Apply Early and Save! $300 off Trimester and $500 off Semester/Year Early Application Discount for Spring 2020 Programs: Apply by May 30, 2019

    Final Deadline to Apply: September 15th, 2019

    • Trimester: Late January 2020 – Mid-April 2020
    • Semester: Late January 2020 – Early July 2020
    • Academic Year: Late January 2020 – Mid December 2020

    Exact dates will be provided closer to your start date!

    Fall 2020 Dates

    Apply Early and Save! $300 off Trimester and $500 off Semester/Year Early Application Discount for Fall 2020 Programs: Apply by December 6, 2019

    Final Deadline to Apply: March 15th, 2020

    • Trimester: Late July 2020 – Mid December 2020
    • Semester: Late July 2020 – Mid December 2020

    Exact dates will be provided closer to your start date!

  • Costs and Inclusions

    Academic Trimester: $10,950
    Academic Semester: $16,630
    Academic Year: $29,330

    Program fee includes:

    • Roundtrip international airfare from LAX to Adelaide (ADL)
    • Airport greeting by your host family or local coordinator
    • Host family accommodations and 3 meals per day
    • Medical/Accident insurance
    • Support and counseling services from in-country staff
    • 24-hour emergency support
    • Pre-departure Orientation and Preparation
      • Cultural Pre-departure Orientation (via Skype)
      • General Pre-departure Orientation (in-person or via Skype)
    • Arrival Orientation with Australian Local Coordinator
    • Personal assistance from a Greenheart Travel program manager
    • Opportunities to volunteer in your host community
    • Letter of Recommendation upon request and successful completion of the program
  • Academic Info

    A typical school day in a South Australian high school will look like:

    • 8.00am: Arrive at school. Homegroup for attendance and daily notices.
    • 8.30am – 10.45am: Lessons such as English and Information Technology
    • 10.45am: Recess (a short break for a drink and snack)
    • 11.00am – 12.45pm: Lessons such as Geography and Mathematics
    • 12.45pm: Lunch (time to eat lunch with your friends, attend activity clubs, music lessons or sports practice)
    • 1.30pm – 3.30pm: Lessons such as Home Economics and Science
    • 3.30pm: School finishes. Many students are involved in after-school sports or music bands.

    Before You Go Abroad

    You should meet with your US high school before you leave and share the general curriculum guidelines of your host country with your guidance counselor and/or teachers. Please consult with them about the credits they will potentially grant you for the classes you take while abroad.

    Because the curriculum will vary by country, it is important that you arrange the required classes required for your graduation, such as U.S. History, before or after your time abroad. There are no guarantees that you can take certain classes at your host school.

    Greenheart Travel will be able to provide information about the general curriculum for your age level in your host country; however, in most cases, you will not be able to sign up for specific courses until AFTER you have arrived in your host country.

    Access your High School Curriculum Guidelines for Australia here!

    Once You’re Abroad

    Please keep in mind that the grading system in other countries is different than the US. Most host schools will not grant grades or transcripts as it is too difficult to evaluate your work due to the language barrier. If your host school is able to award you grades, they won’t be an exact match to what you would get in the US.

    Studying in the South Australian hills will allow you to experience the many wildlife parks where you can cuddle with a koala and feed a kangaroo! Exploring the Adelaide Central Business District will allow you to visit the Adelaide Central Markets and the Adelaide Zoo!

    Your host family might take you to visit surrounding sites such as Kangaroo Island, Remarkable Rocks, or Flinders Ranges, the largest mountain range in South Australia with plenty of walking trails and opportunities to spot native wildlife! In between visits to art galleries and museums, check out the South Australian beaches! They are perfect for swimming, fishing, snorkeling or surfing.

  • Eligibility

    In researching a study abroad program, you have already shown you are a leader and open-minded in your academic pursuits. These are just a few of the traits that our exchange students possess. You’re motivated to immerse yourself in another culture and flexible enough to live outside your comfort zone. You should also:

    • Be between 15 and 18 years of age
    • Be from the United States or Canada
    • Possess a high school cumulative GPA of at least 2.75/4.0
    • Be in great mental* and physical health
    • Have a genuine interest in becoming a part of your host family and community

    *What does it mean to be in good mental health?

    Moving to a new culture and staying in unfamiliar surroundings without your normal support structure can be very stressful, even to the most well-adjusted student. Sending a student with pre-existing conditions on a long term exchange program could exacerbate whatever challenges the student was previously facing. In order to ensure the safety of our participants, we must be rigorous in our pre-screening of our high school applicants.

  • Host Families

    The best way to learn about a new culture and language is to be fully immersed in it which is why all Greenheart Travel high school abroad students live with host families. All our host families are volunteers and will treat you as a member of their family. By being a part of your family’s daily life, you will learn to live and speak like a local.

    Prospective host families undergo a rigorous screening process. Participants can rest assured that only suitable host families will be selected. In fact, many of our current host families have hosted students in the past, showing what an impactful experience it was.

    In order to qualify as a host family, the prospective hosts must:

    • Successfully pass a criminal background check
    • Undergo and pass an in-person interview with program staff
    • Agree to and pass a home inspection

    We will connect you with your host family prior to your arrival in your host country. By e-mailing and speaking with them before arriving, it will help break the ice when you finally meet in person. It will also show that you are as excited to live with them as they are to host you!

    Host families have many reasons why they want to welcome you! Our host families are volunteers, meaning they don’t receive compensation for housing and feeding students during their program. Many host families love the experience of cultural exchange – they learn just as much about your country as you do theirs. Many are also former exchange students and want to return the favor, or they have children who have gone or will go to study in the U.S. Having an exchange student exposes their children to new languages and cultures.

    Greenheart Traveler and his new host family!

    Placement FAQs

    Can I choose where I will be placed with my host family?

    No. You can choose your destination country, but you must be flexible about where you are placed within that country. We can never guarantee placements in any specific city or region, and we match based on compatibility with the host family and availability. Our priority is to identify a host family and community that is the best match for you.

    I know a family in my program country that would like to host me. Is this possible?

    This is possible as long as we have a network in the family’s host community and there is an available nearby host school.

    Will I be placed in a city?

    No. It is very unlikely you will be placed in a city. A majority of our families live in small to medium-sized towns outside of major cities, and it is important you be open-minded to small-town life.

    Will I have a host sibling my age?

    There is no guarantee that you will have a host sibling your age. Your host family may have young children, teenage children, or grown children who no longer live at home. Regardless of the age of your host siblings, they’ll be excited to welcome into the family!

    What if I don’t like my host family? Can I request a new one?

    No. We do not change host families based on preferences or location. However, once you are on the program and if issues arise, we will handle them on a case-by-case basis and will make changes if necessary.

  • For Parents

    The decision to send your teenager abroad can be difficult and there are a lot of questions to consider. We understand your concerns and the Greenheart Travel staff is there for you every step of the way! For us, it is important that parents be involved in the decision from day one.

    We want to make the process of studying abroad as fun and painless as possible for you and your child, while also ensuring that it is a successful and life-changing adventure! 

    Below are some of the common questions we get from parents as they consider our study abroad program:

    What does it mean to be in good mental health?

    Moving to a new culture and staying in unfamiliar surroundings without your normal support structure can be very stressful, even to a well-adjusted student. Sending a student with pre-existing conditions on a long-term exchange program could exacerbate whatever challenges the student was previously facing. In order to ensure the safety of our participants, we must be rigorous in our pre-screening of all high school abroad applicants.

    Therefore, we may not be able to accept students who have struggled with any kind of mental illness within the last 2 years and/or are reliant on medication to address their existing mental health condition.

    These include, but are not limited to:

    • Depression
    • Obsessive compulsive disorder
    • Debilitating anxiety
    • Eating disorders

    If the student’s mental health issue has been managed (post-medication) for over 2 years, we will ask for a note from his/her relevant practitioner (psychologist, therapist, psychiatrist, etc) as part of the application process.

    What kind of assistance will my child receive while abroad?

    There is a strong network of people working together to ensure your child’s time abroad is successful. This includes the Greenheart Travel program manager in the U.S., the natural parents, the local coordinator abroad in country, the host school, and the host family. Immediate assistance will be provided by the local coordinator and/or host family according to a robust chain of communication, explained prior to departure.

    Do you offer any scholarships, financial aid, or special discounts?

    Yes. Every year we offer various scholarships for select high school program destinations. There are two Early Bird Deadline discounts offered each year as well. See our Start Dates for more information. If you have hosted a student for Greenheart Exchange, you are also eligible for a Greenheart Host Family discount.

    My child’s school requires service learning in order to graduate. How will they do that abroad?

    Greenheart Travel is proud to offer the Greenheart Club for all of our students. The Greenheart Club challenges our participants to pursue a deeper level of immersion through volunteerism. As a member of the Greenheart Club, your child will receive guidance in strategizing creative ways to give back to their community, have access to tools for tracking their impact and receive incentives for their efforts as a global leader. This is a great chance for your child to get to know the local community outside of the classroom while they study abroad.

    Can friends study abroad together?

    Our programs are based on a full, cultural immersion experience so friends are not allowed to study abroad together in the same host town. Don’t worry though; making friends in the new host country will happen quickly!

    Can my child come home to visit or can we visit them while abroad?

    No. Visits are not allowed during the high school program. If your family wishes to visit, you should plan to meet your child after your program is completed. In this instance, Greenheart Travel’s National office and international partner office should be informed of your family’s plans.

    Does my child need to be fluent in another language?

    No. One of the main goals of studying abroad is to become fluent in another language while living overseas. The host family and school will not expect your child to be fluent when they first arrive and will help them improve their language skills. As long as your child tries their best, they’ll pick up the language sooner than you might think!

    Can my child take the SATs while abroad?

    Your child will not be able to take the SAT’s while abroad.  We highly recommend taking the SAT’s prior to or after the program.

    My child has already graduated, are they still eligible?

    On a case by case basis, we can accept graduated students for Argentina, Austria, Belgium, France, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.

    Can we speak to current high school students or alumni?

    Yes! Check out our blog or your child can join our exclusive teen programs Facebook group to talk to current and past students.

  • Application Process

    Application Process

    Committing to studying abroad can feel daunting, but we are here every step of the way to make the application process as simple as possible! Below are the various steps you’ll need to take to be accepted on a high school abroad program.

    1. Start Your Application Here: Greenheart Travel Application. Once the initial form is complete, you will be connected to a High School Abroad program manager who will speak with you and a parent to go over the details of the program.

    2. Sign the Terms & Conditions (Approximately 10 Minutes): After you complete Part 1 of your application, you and one parent will be asked to read through and sign our Terms and Conditions which outline the requirements and policies of the program.

    3. Submit your deposit (Approximately 5 minutes): Next, you will submit your $1,000 non-refundable deposit which reserves your spot on the program and is subtracted from your total program fee.

    4. Skype Interview (Approximately 30-45 Minutes): After submitting your deposit, you will schedule an interview with Allison.  During this interview, Allison will ask you questions about living with a host family, adjusting to new situations and homesickness, among other things. She will also explain the overview of the next few months and what you can expect. This is done via Skype, and at least one parent should also be in attendance. If you do not have Skype, please download it before the interview.

    5. Secondary Application Form (Approximately 30 Minutes): This part of the application process will help us get to know you and assess the best match for your host family abroad. You will need to provide detailed information about yourself, why you want to study abroad, and what you hope to gain from your experience. You can do this prior to the Skype interview should you wish.

    5. Second Parent to Sign the Terms & Conditions (Approximately 5 minutes): Your other parent will be asked to read through and sign our Terms and Conditions which outline the requirements and policies of the program.

    6. Submitting Your Documents: You will also be required to submit documents (outlined below). You can be collecting the documents during the application process, but all documents will be due 14 days after you submit your deposit.

    Once you’ve completed all the steps, Greenheart Travel will thoroughly review your application and will contact you within 2-3 weeks about your acceptance. Then, you’ll get more information about preparation, visas, and placement.

    Required Documents

    In addition to completing an application, you will also be required to submit documents. You can be collecting the documents during the application process, but all documents will be due 14 days after you submit your deposit.

    The following documents will be required for all destinations:

    • Letter of Recommendation (from a teacher, coach or guidance counselor) – does not need to be sealed, should be scanned and uploaded to the document portal
    • Transcripts from the last 3 years (unofficial transcripts accepted)
    • Student Dear Family Letter
    • Parent Questionnaire & Letter
    • Photo Album (5-7 photos of you on a Word document with captions)
    • Medical Form (including immunizations)
    • Copy of your passport
    • 60-90 second self-introduction video sent via YouTube link
    • Secondary rules & expectations document signed by both parents and students

    Payments

    For payments, a $1,000 non-refundable deposit will be due with your submitted application. This is a deposit, not an application fee, and will be deducted from your overall program cost. If your application is submitted after the deadline, the deposit will be $2,000.

    Once you are accepted onto the program, a $5,000 commitment deposit will be due within 7 days of acceptance.  Remaining balance is due on June 1st for fall departures and November 1st for spring departures.

    You’ve Been Accepted, Now What?

    Start getting ready for your adventure! Your program manager will be in regular communication with you to make sure that you are on track in your preparations to go abroad.

    • Upon acceptance, you will receive a student handbook (parents – you get one, too!) and access to the Greenheart Travel Atlas, as well as the Greenheart Club.
    • You will receive your host family and school placement roughly 2-3 month after acceptance.
    • After receiving your host family and school placement, you will receive further instructions on applying for you student visa (if applicable for your program length)
    • We will also schedule an online pre-orientation with other Greenheart students a few weeks before your departure!
  • Schedule a Call

    Have questions or want to talk to one of the program coordinators? Set up a time to have a phone call below.


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