Program Overview 

LeapYEAR program overview

LeapYear is a gap year and a full year of college through Naropa Universitya year of experience, adventure, and personal reflection. It is a transformative bridge into college and independent adulthood. LeapYear programs run Fall-Spring and Spring-Summer, allowing two yearly opportunities to complete a full gap year, first or second year of college, or final year of high school.

The leapyear program

Two semesters (Fall-Spring or Spring-Summer) of transformative learning experiences including: 

  • 9-10 weeks of group travel in South Asia or Central America 
  • 9-12 weeks of an individual internship, in your area of interest, chosen from sites worldwide 
  • 3-4 immersive learning retreats, book-ending the travel portions of the year to integrate, reflect, and carry forward the learning experiences of the year  
  • 30 college credits to be transferred to your university of choice 
  • Full-time enrollment at Naropa University, with full access to federal financial aid (FAFSA) & generous additional scholarships  

LeapYear’s Travel 

LeapYear is a year of intentional travel, immersion, and adventure: 

  • First Semester –Your LeapYear takes off with 9-10 weeks of group travel to either South Asia or Central America. Guided by experienced leaders, you and your small cohort of student peers will together explore and immerse yourselves in these rich cultural landscapes.  
  • Second Semester – Your LeapYear continues with a 9-12 week solo internship, developed with the support of our internship specialists during your first semester. We help you hone in on your interests, skills, and world region of preference to design an experience that is unique to you! 

LeapYear’s Immersive Learning Retreats 

Our Immersive Learning Retreats bookend the travel portions of your year, providing a structured opportunity to integrate, reflect, and carry forward your learning experiences.  

LeapYear’s Immersive Learning Retreats are designed to prepare students for their travel experiences ahead. Retreats are structured, cultivated learning opportunities that allow for a deep-dive into reflection of one’s journey through our contemplative curriculum. Retreats take place near or on Naropa University’s campus in beautiful Boulder, Colorado.  


Details: How LeapYear Unfolds 

Semester 1: 

  1. Immersive Learning Retreat 1: Orientation - Preparing for the Journey 
  2. Group Travel in South Asia or Central America (9-10 Weeks)
  3. Immersive Learning Retreat 2: Integration of First Semester


Semester 2: 
  1. Immersive Learning Retreat 3 – Introduction to Second Semester
  2. Individual International Internship
  3. 6. Immersive Learning Retreat 4 – Culmination of the Year

*Note: For some LeapYear programs, retreats 2 & 3 will be combined into one longer retreat.