Fall Semester
Sept 19 – Dec 12

Day Student: $13,000
Boarding Student: 18,000


Fall Semester

Fall is always a favorite season for all of us at Calleva. This is where the creative juices flow!

The Fall GAP Semester is organized into 3 blocks that build into an exceptional final trip. This is a next-level expression of our summer adventure philosophy,  where students learn a little bit of everything, test themselves, and grow into a passion that will shape their life. Each block allows students to learn new skills in various platforms to encourage integrated, well-rounded growth.

Core blocks are mixed with evening activities and workshops to help young adults practice balance in their daily life of being lifelong learners. Students explore their individual passions and work as a group, discovering how to be a fun loving, responsible adult.


Block 1:  Core Skills ~ 4 weeks. This intro block is all about life skills that we believe are necessary as young adults heading out into the world and finding independence. Each day, students work in a different field on a schedule that spans 6 days a week for 4 weeks. Students gain a level of proficiency in each of our Fall 2020 Core Skills: 

  • Culinary Skills — working in our commercial kitchen to learn the basics of cooking and preparing in a farm-to-table setting
  • Construction — learning the basics of working with power tools, gaining design and building skills to the next level
  • Mechanics — learning to be proficient with basic mechanical skills, working with engines and vehicle maintenance (change a tire, change your oil, rotate your tires and more!)
  • Agriculture — learning to grow, harvest, and process foods including sustainable proteins (chicken, pork, beef, wild game)
  • Outdoor Adventure — learning about the greatest natural playgrounds this area has to offer and learning the skills (climbing, kayaking, mountain biking) to engage in all that they have to offer
  • Community Engagement– working with local communities to make outdoor adventure sports accessible to urban and underserved communities

This introduction block allows GAP students to gain an array of skills that will allow them to make an experienced decision on a project that they will want to commit to independently later in the fall. It will set them up with general skills that will come into play throughout their semester with us. Community Engagement and Outdoor Adventure skill development will continue throughout the semester as Saturday activities and evening meet-ups.

Block 2: Group Collective Project Block ~ 4 weeks. Working with fellow students on a collective project that requires team work, group collaboration, prioritizing, and assigning tasks. Bigger group projects pull different skills and tools necessary to complete tasks. Students work with advisors and trade professionals to solve a variety of challenges. Project managers assign tasks to rotating teams to maintain work schedule and finish within the allotted timeframe.  

  • 3 days each week are slated for design, research, & build*.
  • 2 days each week are designed around workshops associated with a Group Project*.
  • 1 day each week is set aside for community engagement and outdoor adventure.
  • Physical activities are scheduled in the evenings.

This year’s FALL 2020 Group Collective Project is a Tiny House.  Students will collaborate with an architect to generate a design that fits a tiny house footprint and can also be mobile. The team must work out materials, timeframe, and schedule tasks according to each member’s skills. With assistance from our mentors and from participating in the Fall GAP Workshops, students will frame the build, run electricity, design the house interior (including shelves/storage, tables, and furniture), as well as exterior elements to get the Tiny House sheathed and roofed!  Important features will be grey water collection, a composting toilet, and solar array to make this Tiny House as GREEN as possible!

Block 3: 
Independent Project Study ~ 4 weeks.
Each student will create a personal project focused in one of our core activities. Each student will be assigned an expert mentor to assist, teach, and guide them as they complete their project. Students leave their Calleva GAP experience with a take-home: something they have designed and built that is useful for in their life. This is truly a passion project and our goal is for students to leave with something that they worked long and hard on.

Students are invited to lead the entire process and will receive ongoing encouragement and feedback to help them self-solve and self-teach based on the difficulties involved in their chosen project. 

  • 2 days each week are spent in design, planning, and working on project with mentor*
  • 2 days each week are focused on independent work on project*
  • 1 day group activity & trip planning and prep
  • 1 day each week is set aside for community engagement and outdoor adventure.
  • *Physical activities are scheduled in the evenings.

Sample independent project: When researching a possible new Calleva Camp, Taylor researched the possibility of shaping a Surf Board. Taylor:

  • experimented with different glassing options from resins to UV epoxies,
  • learned to work on the tools necessary to shape and sand foam blanks, and
  • experimented with artistic options like rice paper printing, airbrush stenciling, fabric embedding and vinyl lettering.

The end result was a board that Taylor can use to surf for the rest of his life, with his own art embedded into the shape he designed.

The sky is the limit on projects that we can create and engineer for students – they will brainstorm with a mentor to execute their vision!

Some ideas of student led projects that have been completed at Calleva. 

Final Trip: Winter Backpacking Trip ~ 10 days.  Calleva GAP students will organize and plan an experience that will pull in many elements from what they learned from their outdoor skills training, including involving community connections. This trip will be birthed from the collective, with our mentors and leaders ensuring that it is not only a stretch for individual and group, but also delivers on a specific set of core values and expectations. The trip must be Adventurous, Safe, Goal-Driven, Well Planned, and should include a Service Element as well as a culminating Group Debrief.

As they plan their trip, students will:

  • establish group and individual goals that can be pre-framed into intentional activities to deliver their desired outcomes,
  • select their trip activities and location,
  • create a budget and timeline for the entire adventure,
  • acquire appropriate permits,
  • plan itinerary with the proper emergency action plans,
  • plan and pack meals, personal and group equipment,

The trip is the semester’s Grand Finale, and must be BIG on ADVENTURE and be true to our motto….. “Adventure is not in the guidebooks and Beauty is not on the map. Seek and ye shall find.”