International Cultural Immersion (GAP)

As part of what Pacia Life describes as Track 5 or the Personal Growth Track, our domestic and international travel experiences share the purpose of increasing self-awareness, contributing to world citizenship, learning cultural and world perspectives, and broadening possibilities with future careers.

Proven methodology of the Tatori Method uses key intrinsic motivators via Motivational Interviewing; many of our young adults add international cultural and service immersion experiences to their life map boards. Pacia Life uses unique screening and preparation, customizing and creating international experiences (often referred to as a GAP experience) that go far beyond the tourist’s goals.

These experiences are often a significant shift in personal growth for a young adult as they experience distant lands, cultures, and become the giver and partner to those in need instead of the receiver. Teaching school while living in a Buddhist Monastery in Nepal, working on a dude ranch in Argentina or building schools and greenhouses in Peru, caring for orphanage children in East Africa or walking the pilgrimage trail across Europe. The list of available countries and opportunities shifts each year based on changing safety concerns, strength of partner organizations, and political stability, all monitored closely by our teams.

Personalized GAP

Study Abroad

International Volunteerism

GAP Prep Programs

GASPY

Personal GAP Experiences

We do something very different than a traditional GAP program does. We create the experience around specific desired outcomes.Through our Tatori Method, we do a full assessment of individual strengths, goals, motivators, GRIT Scale specific to international travel, and then create or recommend a plan of action.

The best way to really understand how and what we do is to call us and we will walk you through the process.

Volunteerism, Cultural Immersion and Study Abroad

Teaching school classes while living in a Buddhist Monastery in Nepal, working to save the Rain Forest in Peru, helping to run an orphanage in South Africa, or working on a Dude Ranch in Argentina are just a few examples of the possibilities.

Domestic and International service, study abroad and full cultural immersion are powerful, life altering experiences and resume builders. Some of these experiences are short and only last for one month while others can extend out to a full year or more.

GAP PREP

GAP Prep is a series of short experiences and classes that specifically are designed around preparing a young adult to maximize the full experience to come. The American Gap Association reports that up to 40% of students are sent home early because of lack of being prepared for the experience and/or rule infractions. Our Tatori method helps create a GAP Prep experience to make the very most of the international experience to come.

GASPY

GASPY was created within the Pacia model to provide alternative gap year opportunities. Courses are designed to deliver adventure and personal growth opportunities for young adults with Aspergers, learning differences, high anxiety, and similar profiles.
Experiential learning utilizing a variety of experiences provides the opportunity for increased self-awareness, coping skills, creative problem solving, and self-efficacy. As part of the admission/orientation process, participants and parents will help create a personalized itinerary base on abilities, interests, and goals.

Pacia’s International Team

Pacia Life International Life Coach Teams have been creating customized international experiences for students since 2010. Our coaches have lived abroad, traveled extensively, and have international educational experience. Our team has developed a specialized assessment process that helps determine a student’s personalized guide to travel: how, where, length of stay or travel, group experiences or individualized, more structured or free-form. In addition to our personal history and experiences, we network extensively with partner organizations around the world to create the optimal experience for each client.

Sarah Persha, MA
American GAP Prep Coordinator

Randy Oakley
GAP Prep and Coordinator

Justin Robinson, LCSW

International GASPY and GAP Specialist

Lara Pearson
GAP Travel Planner

Ariana Dabier

International Specialist

Janet Robinson, CSW

International GAP & GASPY Specialist

Rachel Faulkman, LCSW
International GAP Specialist

Robert Erdman

GAP Specialist

Ramsey Beecher
Business Owner
Entrepreneur

Craig Pearson

Experiential Educator

  • “Heyya! I go by Dave. My travels to the mountain ranches of Argentina and working the land in New Zealand taught me how fulfilling it is to sweat into another country’s soil. To let go of a piece of yourself that you thought was you, and gain some truth. I highly recommend finding your own place of service, goat, and goodness through traveling and gap years. It was largely through my life coaches, trips to Alaska and Argentina that I found myself at Portland State University!”

    “Heyya! I go by Dave. My travels to the mountain ranches of Argentina and working the land in New Zealand taught me how fulfilling it is to sweat into another country’s soil. To let go of a piece of yourself that you thought was you, and gain some truth. I highly recommend finding your own place of service, goat, and goodness through traveling and gap years. It was largely through my life coaches, trips to Alaska and Argentina that I found myself at Portland State University!”

    ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
    Dave Persha
  • “I had been living in Nepal with the Buddist Monks for four weeks when the earthquake hit Katmandu, Nepal. Previously, as part of my personal goals, I had spent a few months in the wilderness and had taken a NOLS WEMT course through the University of Utah. I could have flown out on a private jet when the earthquake hit but I choose to stay. I spent two more months serving the people in remote mountain villages after the earthquake. I made life long friends and experiences that I will cherish the rest of my life. Thank you Pacia for this experience". 

    “I had been living in Nepal with the Buddist Monks for four weeks when the earthquake hit Katmandu, Nepal. Previously, as part of my personal goals, I had spent a few months in the wilderness and had taken a NOLS WEMT course through the University of Utah. I could have flown out on a private jet when the earthquake hit but I choose to stay. I spent two more months serving the people in remote mountain villages after the earthquake. I made life long friends and experiences that I will cherish the rest of my life. Thank you Pacia for this experience". 

    ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
    David Nodier
  • “It was an awakening. I am thankful every day that I spent three months in Nepa, a month in South Africa, and two months in Peru. I was already admitted into college but these experiences made me come back and go a whole different direction with a new college and a different choice of major.



    My life has been so enriched by the experience, and so many doors are opened everywhere I go simply by the change in perspective these international service experiences has given me. My friends who haven’t taken a gap year look around and see only college, classes, internships, resumes… I look around and see the entire world waiting for me.”

    “It was an awakening. I am thankful every day that I spent three months in Nepa, a month in South Africa, and two months in Peru. I was already admitted into college but these experiences made me come back and go a whole different direction with a new college and a different choice of major.



    My life has been so enriched by the experience, and so many doors are opened everywhere I go simply by the change in perspective these international service experiences has given me. My friends who haven’t taken a gap year look around and see only college, classes, internships, resumes… I look around and see the entire world waiting for me.”

    ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
    Nyq Bruzzo