Our Organization

Mission: To educate students with the global understanding necessary to address the challenges of our interdependent world. With the world as our classroom, our unique shipboard program integrates multiple-country study, interdisciplinary coursework, and hands-on field experiences for meaningful engagement in the global community.

About the Institute for Shipboard Education

The Institute for Shipboard Education (ISE) is a 501c3 nonprofit based in Fort Collins, Colorado that administers the Semester at Sea study abroad program in conjunction with Colorado State University.

The mission of ISE is to educate individuals with the global understanding necessary to address the challenges of our interdependent world. Since 1963, more than 60,000 people from 1,700 institutions, have traveled to more than 60 countries on Semester at Sea and its predecessor programs.

ISE Leadership and Staff

The Institute for Shipboard Education employs a staff dedicated to global education. Our highly responsive, passionate and mission-focused team believes in the educational mission of Semester at Sea and quality education abroad. Many ISE employees sailed on Semester at Sea during their college years or as voyage staff.

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History of Shipboard Education

Inspired by a one-time voyage led in 1926 by James Edwin Lough of New York University, William Hughes, California businessman and visionary, gave life to the idea of “shipboard education” for college students. He planned what would be the very first voyage of Semester at Sea in 1963, then known as the University of the Seven Seas.

Over the next decade, through the perseverance and shared vision of co-founders John and Valerie Scudder, M.A. Griffiths, Lloyd Lewan, John Tymitz and Max Brandt, and the resources of renowned Chinese shipping magnate C.Y. Tung, Semester at Sea grew into an accredited, global shipboard education program.

Since its maiden voyage in 1963, Semester at Sea has sailed on six primary floating campuses, collaborated with five academic sponsors, executed 114 safe and successful voyages, traveled to more than 60 countries and impacted the lives of more than 60,000 alumni from 1,700 colleges and universities worldwide.

It is the legacy of our founders, the enthusiasm of our dedicated legion of alumni and the continued passion of those presently working for the program that allow Semester at Sea to continue as a life-altering experience for all who sail.

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