Chapman Impact Program Scholarship

Scholarship Information


  • One multi-day, overnight Field Class
  • Tuition waiver for one 3-credit course
  • Top applicants also receive $1,000 toward voyage program fees

Voyages: Spring and Fall

Eligibility: All Students

SAS Financial Aid Apply Eligibility

Thank you for your interest in applying for Semester at Sea grants and scholarships! You must be a confirmed voyager, by paying your deposit, before you can apply for any Semester at Sea financial aid. Please answer the questions below to continue.

The Chapman Impact Program

The Chapman Impact Program connects a cohort of Semester at Sea students with carefully selected nonprofits in countries we visit, giving them an up-close and hands-on introduction to each organization’s work to craft bold solutions to both global and local challenges.

The Program provides capacity-building project grants to vetted international partners doing beneficial work in Semester at Sea port countries. In tandem, organizational partners collaborate with Semester at Sea to craft immersive, action-oriented Field Classes exploring those pressing social, economic, or environmental challenges which they are working to transform. 

Our ultimate goal is to contribute to sustainable, positive impact for our in-country communities and our student voyagers.  

Organizational Partners

Each voyage may collaborate with one to two international, organizational partners doing beneficial project work in Semester at Sea port countries. Selected partner organizations have the opportunity to apply for a grant to support their local work.

As a student enrolled in the cohort, you will participate in one in-country Field Program exploring and supporting the work of NGO’s

This video features staff and artisans from Fall 2019 voyage organizational partners Global Mamas (Ghana) and Global Diversity Foundation (Morocco).

3-credit course

The course connected to the Chapman Impact Program explores global issues in the countries we visit and the work organizational partners are doing in-country.

Multi-Day Field Class

Each cohort will participate in one multi-day, in-country Field Class, free-of-charge, exploring the work conducted by international partners. Field Classes will be developed to dive deep into the content of the course. After each Field Class, you will further debrief, and reflect on the experience.

Scholarship Overview

Do you want to learn more about international NGOs and do something meaningful and unique while in port — for free? Interested in what Semester at Sea is doing to give back to the places and people we visit? Interested in exploring the concept of sustainable and responsible tourism and delving into the complexities of international development? Apply to join the Chapman Impact Cohort!

Each Chapman Impact Cohort (approx. ~15–25 students) will travel together on one custom multi-day, overnight Field Class to visit and support partner NGOs (which are being funded in part by Semester at Sea). The Cohort will work together during at-sea days to learn about relevant concepts, prepare for each visit, and reflect and process after the Field Class.

Expectations & Commitments


This merit-based scholarship is open to all students. Demonstration of financial need is optional but will be taken into consideration in the selection of finalists. Applications will be evaluated on demonstrated leadership potential, self and global awareness, a passion for change, and academic involvement.

Important note: Some courses could have a required Field Class that conflicts with the scheduled Impact Field Class dates. Therefore, students who register in a course with a Field Class during the same time will not be able to participate in the Impact Cohort.


Our vision is to harness the power and potential of travel for the collective good. Through the generous financial support of the Chapman Family Foundation, Semester at Sea is excited to launch the Impact Project to help further this vision. At its core, this project is about:

Voices from Our Voyagers

The most impactful part of our time with Grootbos for me was meeting and speaking with the individuals that come together to make this organization operate the way it does. It appears that people from all different backgrounds, different ages, different interests, and different skill sets, were able to join each other as a team in an effort to create a series of projects and not only cultivate and protect the local environment but also engage with and support the communities that surround it.

Prior to this opportunity I had such a small understanding of the rest of the world, how others thought, and what made them happy. Because of this scholarship, I was able to discuss important topics like what is Islamic feminism looks like. I talked to a Berber man about the very real effects of climate change in his village. I talked to a mother in Ghana about balancing work and home. Each of the people I talked to made the impact, the change, that is the purpose of the Impact Cohort.

Being a part of the Impact Cohort I have been able to grow as a global citizen. Not only have I had the opportunity to visit a new country but I can tell you I was able to immerse myself in a way that I could have never imagined.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do we define ‘Impact’?
  • Impact is Reciprocal. As an IMPACT cohort participant you will explore a topic of global importance from a local perspective and project grants support work in local communities. You should come into this experience with the knowledge that it may be your worldview that is transformed. 
  • Impact requires Awareness. The humility to acknowledge the limitations and gifts of our own lens, the curiosity to learn from others and explore multiple ways of knowing, and the ability to recognize that there is not one right solution to complex challenges 
  • Impact requires Continued Engagement. The challenges we collectively face, those we have created and those that we are just subject to, were not forged in a day. While some may benefit from short-term solutions, others require a longer-term investment. Impact takes time and is a continual process of learning and trying again.
What will I gain from getting involved in the Impact Cohort? 

In addition to participating in the 3-credit INST 200 course and the 1 multi-day Field Class free-of-charge, it has been said that one of the most powerful aspects of the Impact Program for students is the ability to explore an important issue in depth with an expert faculty member and other cohort students. The connections that Impact Cohort students build with their faculty facilitator and other cohort members can be lasting. Previous cohort students have credited the Impact Program for having inspired in them new possibilities for their future – what they would like to explore personally and professionally in their adult lives.

Who should get involved in the Impact Cohort? 

The opportunity to participate in the Impact Cohort is available to all SAS students that have been selected through the Impact Cohort application in the SAS Scholarships & Financial Aid portal. If a student’s application has been selected, they will be notified and given the opportunity to register in an Impact Cohorts. 

If you have an interest in learning about how global issues affect local communities, international development work, non-governmental organizations, and responsible travel then you should apply. The Impact Cohort is made up of students from a variety of majors and home institutions. 

The Chapman Impact Program is generously supported by Greg and Kristen Chapman through the Chapman Family Foundation.

Interested in supporting the Chapman Impact Program?  

Apply Now

In order to be eligible for this scholarship, you must be a confirmed voyager who has paid your deposit.