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Overview

Study and encounter the world's most majestic predators. Observe great whites from a shark cage, witness a feeding frenzy on the great sardine run and track lions at a game reserve.

Learn about the world's most revered predators both above and below the surface. Climb into the cage and observe great white sharks up close. Witness the whales of Hermanus: southern right whales, Brydes and humpbacks are common sightings. Travel to the Indian Ocean to snorkel during the great sardine run, a feeding frenzy of millions of sardines by the ocean's top predators. Then head to Siyafunda, a wildlife reserve and research station where we partake in daily game drives teaching us all about tracking and how game reserves function. Spot lions, giraffes, elephants, and if you're lucky, the elusive leopard. Help biologists collect and analyze data to help with conservation efforts while also completing a research project of your own.

DatesGradesLengthTuitionAvailability
June 15 - July 9 C25 days$6,980Open
Earn & Learn
South Africa Ultimate Predators Earn & Learn

Earn & Learn

Broadreach combines your thirst for fun and adventure with tangible skill development, real-world educational opportunities and a genuine commitment to service. While on program, you’ll earn documented community service hours and even college credits. It’s what we call “Earn & Learn,” and it’s what you’ll take home as evidence of your many accomplishments.

South Africa Ultimate Predators offers 3 natural science college credits through Lesley University. Additionally, students earn 35 hours of documented community service.

EXPERIENCE REQUIRED:
  • Minimum 18 years old
  • High school graduate
  • High school or college Biology
  • Minimum GPA: 2.50
  • Completed at least one semester at college or graduated high school over a year ago
ACADEMICS & COLLEGE CREDIT
Course Description

This course explores the realms of ultimate predators, both above and below the surface. It highlights some of the challenges faced by predators in their daily struggle to find food. During the initial stage of the course we come face to face with the sleek form of the great white shark, perhaps Earth’s most successful predator. We then move on to observing some of the largest predators, the whales in Hermanus. During these amazing observations, lectures accompanying the focus of the day will be given to broaden students’ awareness of the topics at hand. The main focus then lands on the greatest migration on earth, the sardine run. After following them for a while we then find ourselves land based for the final section. While living at a wildlife sanctuary, work and learn alongside conservationists, researchers and veterinarians as they strive to rescue, rehabilitate and provide sanctuary for Africa’s endangered creatures including giraffes, zebras, rhinos and elephants.

Course Objectives
  • Learn research methods used by biologists to understand animal behavior, ecology and conservation
  • Explore the biology, behavior, natural history and ecology of South African wildlife
  • Learn about the conservation threats to predators as a whole and strategies for mitigating those threats
  • Be able to relate the conservation threats facing predators in South Africa to those faced by different animals in ecosystems throughout the world
COMMUNITY SERVICE

Through service, gain a more meaningful connection to the cultures and communities you explore while taking an active role to address important global issues at the local level. While in South Africa, work with a renowned game reserve and leading shark researcher on ongoing environmental and conservation projects. The projects give you the opportunity to use the methods learned in class to make real life scientific contributions.

  • Collect data and do great white shark research and field work
  • Complete wildlife population surveys
  • Reintroduce animals into the wild
  • Help construct fence boundaries and habitat maintenance

35 Service Hours

3 College Credits

South Africa Ultimate Predators Itinerary

Itinerary

1

The thrills begin before you’ve even had a chance to catch your breath after arriving in Cape Town. A hike up Table Mountain, which overlooks this stunning city, is the perfect start to the adventure. Jump right into daily lectures, cover the history of South Africa as well as the biology, behavior, natural history and ecology of South African wildlife. Head to Simon’s Town to kayak along the cape and observe a large African penguin colony. Then it’s time to study the ultimate predator of them all. Put on your snorkel gear, climb into a shark cage and prepare to come face to face with one of the world’s most revered hunters, the great white. Not long after we descend into shark-infested waters, we quickly discover that these creatures are not mindless killers, but beautiful animals worth studying and observing. The cage dives continue in Hermanus, where you’ll also keep an eye out for some of the world’s largest predators: the whales of Hermanus. Look for southern right whales, Brydes whales or even humpbacks. We even get the chance to watch a shark dissection and help with conservation efforts by doing egg sac collection, which helps estimate location and size of different shark populations.

summer programs africa
2

After a short flight to Durban, we’ll drive down the southern coast to Port St. Johns, our home for the next five days as we hunt for the mass of billions of sardines, sharks and other predators in the Indian Ocean during the epic great sardine run. Snorkel with dolphins, humpback whales, dusky sharks and maybe even a few black tip sharks! After full days of endless experiential adventure, we use what little energy we have left to explore the local area known as ‘The Wild Coast’.

3

Next up, Makalali, home to a wildlife reserve and research station. People from all over the world flock to South Africa in search of the Big 5 lions, black rhinos, cape buffalo, African elephants and elusive leopards. Hint, they’re all hanging out near Kruger National Park, located within the Greater Makalali Private Game Reserve. We dive right into hands-on encounters with game animals, collect data for ongoing conservation research and experience firsthand how a game reserve functions. Go on daily game drives. Take wildlife surveys. Reintroduce animals into the world. Make a difference in animal conservation before returning to Johannesburg to fly home after this ultimate experience.

study South Africa Ultimate predators
  • Trip Highlights

  • Cage dive with Great White Sharks off the Cape of South Africa
  • Chase the incredible sardine run off the coast of Durban, searching for humpbacks and dolphins
  • Conduct research while experiencing sunrise and sunset game drives with an eye for the Big Five
  • Hike to the top of Table Mountain for a stunning view of Capetown
  • Learn about animal behavior by observing a penguin colony
South Africa Ultimate Predators Reviews & Testimonials

Reviews & Testimonials

Alexander Dwornik from Centreville, VA

This trip went so far beyond my expectations. It truly exemplified real world learning. You will learn about sharks and then see them the very next day. I remember reading these reviews as I contemplated my own study abroad decisions. All I can say is if you’re on the fence, choose this course. Everyday is filled with a life changing experience, whether it be snorkeling with dolphins or seeing lions walk right by you, this course has it all.

Lauren Uhlberg from Cheshire, CT

It’s been seven months since I have gone on this trip, and I still find myself talking about it every chance I get. Cape Town was by far my favorite place to visit. The locals were so friendly, and I loved seeing the African Penguins in the wild. They were so playful! Diving with the sharks and jumping off the boat to swim with the whales and dolphins was fascinating, too. Never in my life have I felt so small as I was swimming alongside a humpback whale. This was an amazing adventure, and I’ll continue to talk about it for years to come. Highly recommend!

Haley Rankin from Rowayton, CT

Our two daughters have been on a total of six Broadreach trips. Each trip has surpassed their expectations and ours as parents. Broadreach has provided our girls with a desire to learn more about the world around them and their responsibility to preserve and protect its varied cultures and environments.

Katelyn Hogge from Clifton, VA

Broadreach Ultimate Predators was an absolutely life changing experience. I feel that I have learned so much, both in and out of the classroom. Learning on this trip happens without you ever realizing it. Whether it be diving into the middle of a bait ball, adapting to unexpected circumstances, collecting data in the field, or even just talking with all of the brilliant, diverse people you meet, this trip guarantees you will grow substantially as a person.

Stevi Lackey from Mansfield, TX

This trip was definitely the best experience I have ever had. From cage diving with Great White Sharks to sitting around with friends, to seeing lions right next to your car, it doesn’t get any better. The people you meet are so interesting and full of information and you get to do the amazing activities that most people only dream about. You grow so much in a short amount of time. I had the best summer of my life and I owe it all to Broadreach and this trip.

Marston Garceau from Bethany, CT

This was my fourth trip with Broadreach and just like the others, it was amazing. I loved every minute of it and cant wait to go home and tell my friends and family all about it. I could not wish for better instructors and I will forever remember everything I learned on this trip. My favorite activities included cliff jumping, hiking, Great Whites, and the game drives and sardine run.

Sarah Brantley from Concord, MA

This experience was hands down the most colorful and enlightening one I’ve had thus far in life. The people were amazing, from our group to all the locals we met, the towns and hostels were brilliant, and the activities pushed people to try things and face fears. I couldn’t be leaving any happier and I’m so thankful I got to have this experience. It opened my eyes in so many new ways and I will always remember this trip quite fondly. I encourage everyone to do something like this before they die, because the lessons you learn and the bonds you make will stay with you forever.

Nikki Maticic from Leesburg, VA

I absolutely loved this trip. I honestly don’t want to leave here. I loved all of our trips, especially the shark dives and safaris! I learned a lot about conservation and increased my passion for animals. I will never forget all the amazing things I learned, saw, and did here. I met some amazing people and made new friends. I can’t wait to tell everyone about my experiences here. Wonderful!

Kimberly Sebastian from Greenwich, CT

I absolutely loved this trip! It made me go completely out of my comfort zone and try things that I never thought I would (i.e. cage diving with sharks or being 10 ft. away from a lion). It was totally worthwhile and a trip that I will never forget.

Kaitlyn Noe from Clarksburg, WV

This trip really broadened my understanding of conservation outside the classroom setting. It was great getting to know the people in my group, but also learning about new cultures and issues facing different places. I loved hearing the Where are you from and Why are you here stories from many different places and people. The experience was very enriching.

Devon Firesinger from Doylestown, PA

If you want an amazing summer filled with culture, wild animals and new friends, Ultimate Predators is the trip for you. Shark diving, safari game dives and spectacular hikes were just some of the awesome activities we did in South Africa.

Alex Dinesen from Doylestown, PA

Ultimate Predators is awesome! It is a very diverse trip which makes it awesome because you get a bit of everything. Great Whites, Whales and Lions are an incredible experience.

South Africa Ultimate Predators FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Question:
What is included in the tuition cost and what additional expenses should I expect?
Answer:

Trip tuition is all inclusive for instruction, food, accommodation and activities from the time you arrive on location. However, you are responsible for your airfare, spending money (we suggest about $150-200), any required textbooks, and student expenses such as medical fees and optional college credits. Some trips require scuba gear which can be rented, purchased or in some cases borrowed from Broadreach. For more information about expenses that might apply to your program, click here.

Question:
Are flights included in the program tuition cost?
Answer:

Airfare is not included in the program tuition cost, mostly because students join our programs from all over the U.S. and other countries around the world. Some programs also have internal flights which are not included in the program tuition, and we’ll provide details on exactly how to book those once you are enrolled.

Question:
How does travel work?
Answer:

For most programs, we have a few recommended flights and an arrival time range, and we usually give you the option to book flights on your own or through our travel agency partner. A few programs have required group flights, which we set up in advance. Students travel independently, but often meet up along the way, and we collect student itinerary details. Broadreach instructors will be waiting in the arrivals hall of the destination airport to greet each student, and they’ll be wearing special shirts and holding a Broadreach sign. We also mail students Broadreach shirts to wear while traveling which makes it easy for them to identify each other. Typically, making travel arrangements and the actual travel days go very smoothly.

Question:
When is the application deadline?
Answer:

We accept applications on a rolling basis until each session is full. So, the sooner you enroll, the greater chance you’ll have to get into your first choice program and session! Some of our most popular program sessions fill as early as the fall.

Question:
What is the application process?
Answer:

Step one: submit your initial application online with a $35 application fee. If there is space, you can secure your spot with a $1000 deposit while you complete the secondary application. Step two: we will send you login details to complete your secondary application (academic reference, personal statement, interview, transcript). Once we accept your secondary application pieces and you’ve paid your deposit, your place on the program is secured!

Question:
What do the academics involve? What if I don’t take the program for credit?
Answer:

Academics will vary by program but usually include journals, discussions, lectures, research projects, and a midterm and final exam. We expect all of our students to participate fully in the academic course work on our programs, regardless of whether they have chosen to take it for official college credit.

Question:
How do college credits work? Where are those credits accepted?
Answer:

We partner with Lesley University in Cambridge, MA to offer college credit for our academic college programs. Those credits are widely accepted at colleges and universities all over North America, and we can often let you know if an alumni student has transferred those credits to a specific school in the past. For more information, click here.

Question:
How many students are in a group? What is the male/female ratio?
Answer:

The majority of programs will have a maximum of 12 students in a group. We aim for a balance of males and females, but in our experience, the gender ratio plays a small role in the success of each program.

Question:
Do most participants come alone or with friends?
Answer:

Most participants come alone, so there is no need to be concerned if you don’t know anyone else on your program. It’s normal to be a little nervous about not knowing other students in advance, but within a day of starting your program you’ll be laughing and sharing exciting adventures with new friends.

Question:
How does Broadreach address safety?
Answer:

Safety is our top priority, and it is something we evaluate from every angle throughout the year. We’re very proud of our safety record over the past 26 years of running international programs for students. There are so many ways to address how we handle safety, including the extensive experience and training of our instructors, the specific locations we choose to visit, the relationships we have established with our local partners, and the 24/7 support we provide our groups. We have extensive program-specific risk management plans and safety standards that we adhere to. We’d be happy to talk about safety in more detail for the program you’re considering if you’d like to call our office.

Question:
Do I need to purchase travel insurance?
Answer:

We require that students have at least $100,000 of emergency evacuation coverage and some kind of international medical coverage, as well as coverage for scuba diving for programs that include diving. We offer two different policy options, or if you already have a policy that meets this criteria, we would just collect those policy details after enrollment.

Question:
What does tuition protection cover?
Answer:

Our Tuition Protection policy covers cancellations for medical reasons up to 100% and for any other reason up to 75% (except for residents of NY state). It’s also a great comprehensive travel insurance policy, including medical coverage, emergency evacuation, travel delay, baggage (loss or delay), etc. The cost of the policy ranges from $319-379 based on the program duration. For more specific coverage details, please call our office.

Question:
Who will my instructors be?
Answer:

Broadreach instructors are highly experienced, passionate, energetic and supportive. The average age of our instructors is 28 years old, and depending on the program, they meet specific qualifications (a Master’s degree in the subject area, PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor certification, foreign language fluency, Wilderness First Responder certification, etc).

Question:
Do your programs accommodate food preferences or food allergies?
Answer:

We do our best to accommodate allergies and food preferences but we consider the situation, country and the program to determine whether it will be a good fit for the specific dietary restriction. It’s important that you let Broadreach know well in advance of any food preferences or allergies so we can determine whether your restrictions will work on your program.

Question:
Can I contact Broadreach alumni families for more information?
Answer:

Absolutely! Just call our office and we can put you in touch with past participants who have joined the programs that interest you. Our alumni families are happy to share their first-person experiences.

Question:
Where will we be staying?
Answer:

Accommodations vary by program, from private villas to jungle cabins to beach cabanas to research stations. We love staying in smaller local accommodations with authentic character rather than big chains, and we rarely camp.

Question:
What should I pack?
Answer:

We provide an extensive packing list for each program that we revise every year based on student and instructor feedback, and most of the items you probably have already. If you’d like to look at a packing list for a certain program, just let us know and we can email the most current version to you.

Question:
How does payment work? Is the deposit or tuition refundable?
Answer:

We require a non-refundable deposit of $1000 to lock in your spot (pending your acceptance into the program), and then the final balance can be spread out and paid in a few different ways. The final payment is requested by about 3 months before departure. Our optional tuition protection plan covers cancellations for medical reasons up to 100% and cancellations for any other reason up to 75% (except for residents of NY state).

Question:
Do you offer any discounts?
Answer:

In the fall, we have a few different early enrollment discounts– please call our office for more information. We also offer a 5% discount on the second enrollment from the same immediate family in a summer. This offer is available to an individual student or siblings. The 5% discount will be applied to the program of lesser cost, and cannot be combined with any other discounts.

Question:
Do you offer scholarships?
Answer:

We do offer some scholarships through the Broadreach Foundation. Please visit www.broadreachfoundation.org for more information and to apply online for scholarships.

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