We believe in leaning into risk.
Notes on safety, reputation, and risk management. If you are a parent who wants reassurance, a student researching programs, or anyone interested in what’s behind our industry leading reputation, here are some important facts:
25+ Years of International Risk Management Experience
Over a quarter-century we’ve built Risk Management systems and regional contacts that help us navigate a wide-range of challenges—from dog bites to lost passports to political instability. We have long-standing relationships with International SOS, key locally-based safety and security officials, and a global network of health care professionals. With Administrators based domestically and internationally, our support team—with acute attention to the safety and security of our participants—is on-call 24/7 while students are in the field.
Our Instructors Are Experienced, Career Professionals
Typically, when a Dragons instructor team heads into the field they collectively represent multiple languages, ten or more years of in-country experience, and years managing student groups abroad. Dragons Instructors average 30+ years in age. Most Dragons instructors work with us for over three years and some veteran staff have been with us for over 10 years. Every instructor team has Wilderness First Aid/Responder, or higher, medical certifications. When needed, Instructors call on their linguistic fluency, local contacts, and regional expertise to deftly navigate unexpected issues. We encourage you to peruse the profiles of our instructors to learn more of their unique life and professional experiences.
We Train the Trainers
Dragons has been leading trainings on best practices in international programming for outside faculty, schools, and organizations since 2009. Additionally, we facilitate a 2-week training focused on wilderness risk management, innovative education practices, and cross-cultural communication for our field staff. This keeps our Instructor community upto- date with the highest standards in international experiential education. We’ve trained over 1,000 Dragons Instructors and stewarded over 300,000 “in-field” participant days, contributing to our industry leading reputation for quality staff.
Schools and Universities Choose Dragons
Dragons has collaborated to design custom programming for Princeton University, The Thacher School, Milton Academy, and Carleton College, among others. To see a full list of the 50+ schools and universities that have partnered with Dragons and read testimonials, visit the Our Partners Section of our website.
Ethics and Sustainability Matter to Us
Administratively, Dragons is B-Corp Certified to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. In the field, Dragons practices a paradigm shift away from “voluntourism” towards “learning service” models that promote community sustainability and participant humility. Dragons has a Community Grant Fund that returns financial support to the places that so generously welcome our participants.
The Experience Is Invaluable
No one can explain it better than someone who knows personally. We welcome the opportunity to put you in touch with other alumni parents or participants to hear about their experiences firsthand.
A Note on Risk
We challenge our students, both physically and emotionally. Our job is to help students embrace those challenges while navigating the associated risks safely, professionally, and transparently. There are risks inherent to travel, which families should carefully consider prior to choosing a program. Please carefully read our Participant Agreements for further details. If you have questions about Dragons safety and security policies, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We would be more than happy to discuss the finer points of our Risk Management systems with you.