Bringing Together the World's Best Minds

Our Program

An Academic Community of Experts

The Semester at Sea experience is fueled by the best and brightest minds in education, giving students unparalleled access to faculty, staff, in country experts and unique experiences.

Voyage Leadership Team

Every voyage sails under the leadership of an executive dean, academic dean and dean of student life. The executive dean is the chief administrator of the voyage, while the academic dean oversees faculty and curricula. The dean of student life promotes and ensures student learning and development in a safe, inclusive community.


At the core of the Semester at Sea academic experience is a team of innovative, stimulating educators who are passionate about international education.

Learn More About Sailing Here


The shipboard Semester at Sea voyage staff focuses on developing a dynamic and synergistic relationship between academic instruction and co-curricular learning. Our voyage staff includes a student life team, medical team and administrative team. The home office of the Institute for Shipboard Education serves as both a guiding organization and an extension of the shipboard team.

A History of Amazing Speakers

World Leaders and Special Guests

Semester at Sea has long-standing relationships with leading international universities, businesses and individuals who bring renowned world scholars and lecturers into the classroom. World figures, leaders and Nobel Laureates have been a part of many Semester at Sea voyages.

Notable lecturers and guests have included:
  • Fidel Castro, former Cuban President and Prime Minister
  • Anwar Sadat, former Egyptian President
  • Indira Gandhi, former Indian Prime Minister
  • Mikhail Gorbachev, final leader of the USSR
  • Corazon Aquino, former President of the Philippines
  • SHRM King Mohammed VI, King of Morocco
  • HRH Moulay Rachid, Prince of Morocco
  • Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Nobel Laureate
  • Mother Teresa, Nobel Laureate
  • Nelson Mandela, First President of South Africa, Nobel Laureate
  • Arthur C. Clark, Author of 2001: A Space Odyssey
  • Pete Peterson, First U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam
  • C.H. Tung, first Chief Executive of Hong Kong after British colonial rule ended in 1997

Interport Students and Lecturers

Interport students and lecturers are temporary members of the shipboard community who come aboard the ship in the port prior to the student or lecturer’s homeport in order to help orient the shipboard community for that country or region. Interport students and lecturers are typically natives of a country on the itinerary, or, at the very least, have a significant level of international expertise and experience in one of the countries and/or major geographical areas of focus.

Interport students and lecturers make themselves available for informal discussions with individual students, faculty and staff to help prepare them for the country they are about to visit. During their time as members of the shipboard community, interport students and lecturers are ambassadors for their respective countries of focus.

Voyage Partners

Semester at Sea provides access to remarkable organizations that help enhance the voyage experience both on the ship and in the countries visited.

  • TEDx
  • The United Nations Association
  • Clinton Global Initiative
  • TOMS
  • Global Grins
  • Global Mamas
  • City of Refuge
  • Heifer International
  • NOAA
  • American Foreign Service Association
  • The National Society of Collegiate Scholars
  • Association of International Educators
  • Colorado State University
  • Overseas Security Advisory Council
  • Habitat for Humanity
  • National Geographic
  • Rotary Club
  • The $100 Solution
  • U.S. Department of State
  • American Council on Education
  • National Society of High School Scholars
  • Unreasonable Institute
  • FrontierMEDEX
  • Association of Public and Land Grant Universities


Expertise in Shipboard Education

Since 1963, the the Institute for Shipboard Education has sailed over 100 voyages with more than 63,000 individuals. ISE comprises more than 40 dedicated employees in its Fort Collins, Colorado headquarters, a senior management team and Board of Trustees who use their expertise to ensure a successful voyage.

Learn More About:

Our Organization
Our History