GPS Trips

The 2018 Global Pathways Spring program (GPS) will be the thirtieth year of providing service-learning and cultural exchange opportunities for students, faculty, staff, and patrons who have a desire to learn about another culture and to live responsibly as global citizens. Reverend Tom Steffen, the former Dean of the Chapel developed the Spring Break in Mission program thirty years ago and this program is one of his remarkable legacies. In October 2012 the name changed from Spring Break in Mission to Global Pathways Spring program (GPS) to better reflect the broad cultural and humanitarian reach of the trips.

There have been trips to seven states, Puerto Rico and twenty-three countries. 

Names are currently being accepted for the trips and should be sent to the adults listed for each trip.  Beginning on Wednesday, September 20, 2017 the $500 non-refundable deposit will be accepted online. 

GPS Online Payment

The deposit is needed to secure a place on the individual mission trips and space is limited. After December 1, 2017 students and/or parents that cancel their participation in a trip (after their deposit is paid) will be responsible for the remaining balance of their trip. Students that are applying for scholarships for one of these trips and can only participate if they earn a scholarship do not need to place a deposit. 

The remaining balance for the cost of these trips is due on Friday, February 2, 2018.

GPS Scholarships

There will be multiple scholarship opportuninties for both CGA and CMA students for the 2018 GPS trips. Please complete the scholarship application below for consideration. 

Apply Online

The essay and application must be completed by 5:00 PM on Monday, October 12. A panel of judges will read the essays and winners of the scholarships will be determined by the results of the essay, application and the above criteria.  Finalists will meet with the panel for a personal interview.

2018 Trips

European Union - Belgium, Luxembourg, France, Germany

March 23 – April 2, 2018

What does it mean to live in Europe today? Explore the European Union’s evolving present by experiencing its art, food, and multicultural heritage, especially its history during the 100th anniversary year of the end of World War I. Our journey, encompassing the EU countries of Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, and France, will lead us on an exploration of how the European Union emerged out of conflict and compromise as seen in a wide array of monuments and cultural sites.  Places visited will include the Flanders Field Museum (evoked during our annual Veteran’s Day Ceremony), a canal boat tour in Ghent, European Union and NATO centers in Brussels, the German City of Trier with its ancient Roman sites, a French language high school in Luxembourg City, World War sites including those important to Culver such as Chateau-Thierry and the Argonne, a French cuisine school in the contemporary culinary capital of the Champagne region, and the Reims Cathedral – the grand location for the crowning of French Kings. Although not required, there will be opportunities to practice French language skills.  PLEASE NOTE:  Those who require a visa to enter the EU may experience difficulties with the process that prevents their participation. 

Contact Mr. John Buggeln (John.Buggeln@culver.org), Mr. Gary Christlieb (Gary.Christlieb@culver.org)  or Ms. Dorothea Ragsdale (Dorothea.Ragsdale@culver.org)  for more information.

Estimated cost is: $4500



March 22 – April 2, 2018

Greece offers the blue Aegean, olive trees, white washed building, wonderful Greek food and some of the world’s greatest antiquities. Join us on a spectacular journey to explore both ancient and modern Greece.  The program will begin in Athens where you will visit sites to include the Acropolis and its Parthenon. The new Acropolis Museum as well as enjoy a dinner at a local Taverna with traditional Greek music and dancing.  The team will then fly to the beautiful island of Samos, home to Pythagoras, where you will spend time interacting with local high school students and work at the Archipelago Institute. There will be information sessions about the incredible unique flora and fauna of the area as well as field and lab work.  The Greece team will take a ferry to the remote and scenic island of Lipsi where you will work at the Aegean Marine Sanctuary.  After we return to Athens, the group will visit the ancient cities of Corinth, Epidaurus and Mycenae celebrated by Homer and the legendary home of Agamemnon.  PLEASE NOTE:  Students who require a visa to enter Greece will not be eligible for this trip.

Contact: Dean Rasch (Lynn.Rasch@culver.org) or Mr. Matthew Behling (Matthew.Behling@culver.org) or Mrs. Jill Behling (Jill.Behling@culver.org) for more details. 

Estimated cost: $4,700



March 23 – April 2, 2018

Students who participate in this cultural immersion in Central Italy will experience the evolution of Italian art and society from its classical roots to the height of the Renaissance.  We will observe the widespread remnants of the ancient Roman world and observe the ways in which later Italians were highly conscious of their cultural heritage.  While staying and assisting in a 15th century convent in Spoleto, students will venture out to explore several Italian hill towns that defined Central Italy from its earliest origins to the modern day.  We will have our meals in a local family restaurant, learn some basic Italian language and cooking skills, and immerse ourselves in the richness of Italy, both past and present.  Our tentative itinerary will include the towns of Ostia Antica, Spoleto, Perugia, Siena, Orvieto, and Florence. PLEASE NOTE: Students who require a special visa to enter Italy will not be eligible for this trip.

Contact: Mr. Andrew Strati (Andrew.Strati@culver.org) or Mr. Hunter Wight (Hunter.Wight@culver.org) for more information.

Estimated cost: $4250.



March 23 – March 31, 2018

The Global Pathways Spring trip to Mexico is the perfect combination of work and play.  For the fourteenth year in a row in Mexico, we will build homes for needy families, and provide cultural exchange with a local elementary school, providing backpacks, supplies and recreational activities.  We have helped hundreds of worthy, yet needy individuals build homes and a future. Every afternoon we enjoy the ocean and pool, wonderful meals at the beach restaurant, and several sightseeing excursions, including whale-watching.  If adventure, building team relationships and giving back to a needy world is in your blood, join Team Mexico.

Contact: Mr. Dana Neer (Dana.Neer@Culver.org) for more information.

Estimated cost: $3,700



March 23- April 3, 2018

Team Tanzania will engage in a cross cultural experience of learning, living and sharing with students and faculty at School of St. Jude Arusha, Tanzania. The mission of St. Jude School is to break the cycle of poverty through education by providing a free instruction to the poorest and brightest students in Arusha. The team will stay in guest housing on campus and will work with primary school students and teachers during their stay. Other aspects of the trip will include a cultural excursion to a Maasai Boma (one of the local tribes), Swahili lessons, participation in other cultural activity options and a safari.  Students must attend an introductory meeting and must agree to the trip contract before making a deposit.

Contact: Mrs. Strobel (Angie.Strobel@culver.org) for more information.

Estimated price $4750