India semester students enjoying a chai stop along the trail
Camera Cass Colman

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Fall Semester in India


Sep 12 - Nov 30, 2024


80 days


18+ yrs



Apply Now (4 spaces)

Find your leadership style in the Himalaya

Leave the tourist destinations behind and head to the remote corners of northwest India to learn about leadership and yourself. Hike deep into the Himalaya and visit places where animal-powered farming is a way of life. Drink spiced cups of chai and challenge yourself with long days of backpacking. Hear the River Kali roar as you and your group learn about teamwork and whitewater rafting. Live with an Indian family and deepen your cultural awareness with classes in ecology and history. On this course, you’ll focus on building a range of outdoor skills, cultural competence, and leadership as you gain a deep understanding of this region of India.

On each section of the course—backpacking, rafting, first aid, and cultural competence—you’ll start with the basics and work toward mastering the skills by the end of the section. As you progress through your semester, leadership will be a constant theme, and you’ll build on what you learned throughout the course. You might start by focusing on leadership skills like tolerance for adversity as you learn the art of Leave No Trace camping in the crags of the Himalaya. Or maybe you’ll focus on communication and decision-making as you and your group problem-solve how to paddle a challenging section of a river. With support from your instructors and your group, you’ll learn to navigate various leadership roles and develop your personal leadership style. You’ll finish the course ready to be a leader wherever you find yourself and armed with the skills to continue exploring the wilderness.

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What Our Grads Say

“India was a catalyst for growth. The outdoors challenged me in ways that a classroom never could, and I found empathy and acceptance among the students that I was travelling with... I found purpose in NOLS, and that drive led me to accomplishment. ”

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