Students are at the centre of all we do at Gane and Marshall School Challenges. Our expeditions are designed for, and to a large extent by, the students who take part in them, who also play a crucial role in getting each expedition off the ground.

These pages detail what students should expect from their expedition, how they can benefit from taking part, and how they should prepare.

How do students benefit?
An overseas expedition is a fantastic way for young people to travel, providing real opportunities for adventure and firsthand cultural experiences. Whether they’re desert trekking in Oman, dog sledding in Arctic Spitsbergen, or mountain climbing in Tanzania, students on our expeditions have the opportunity to travel far from the beaten track, visiting new and unfamiliar places and taking on exciting challenges; in short, the opportunity to explore the world, in a safe and productive way.

More than this, taking part in an expedition can have very real academic benefits. Most of our expeditions can be tailored to complement aspects of the school curriculum, with the option to focus on particular subject areas such as languages, history, biology or religious education. In addition, participation in a school challenge can be used as evidence of key skills on UCAS and job applications, and can also contribute towards a Duke of Edinburgh award.

Here are some of the ways in which students can benefit from taking part in a Gane and Marshall school challenge:

Personal benefits
• Improved confidence, initiative and independence - during their expedition students will be challenged both mentally and physically and encouraged to step outside their comfort zone
• The ability to work with a team, to lead and be led - students on our challenges will have to work together, often under pressure, to achieve their goals
• Organisational and planning skills - a great deal of planning goes into each challenge, both prior to and during the expedition, and we try to involve the participants wherever practical
• Financial management - students will have to think up creative ways to raise the necessary sponsorship money to cover their challenge costs
• Skills to assess and manage risk

Academic Benefits
• Greater cultural awareness, and the necessary knowledge to travel safely in unfamiliar countries
• Completion of a Gane and Marshall school challenge can contribute towards a Duke of Edinburgh award, and can also form part of the IB diploma, helping to fulfil the Creativity, Action and Service and Extended Essay elements.
• Valuable addition to UCAS and job applications

What role do students play preceding the expedition?
Students will have the opportunity to involve themselves in various aspects of the preparation and planning that goes into their expedition.

Planning: Our bespoke approach to itinerary development means that there is always plenty of scope for students, with their teachers, to shape their travel itinerary according to their preferences. We will provide a core itinerary from the outset, which will help set the parameters of the planned expedition, but beyond this students and teachers will have plenty of say in the structure and content of their itinerary.

Training: Training is essential for all of our challenges. We offer students plenty of support, in the form of advice, programmes and organised training days. A place on one of our training days is included in the cost of your challenge.

Fundraising: Raising sponsorship provides students with a great opportunity to get together and work creatively as a team. Typically, students will cooperate to raise funds for one or two trusts or charities selected by their school, though it’s perfectly possibly for them to fundraise independently for a charity of their own choosing. The fundraising process might seem daunting at first, but we do all we can to aid students by providing advice and guidance along the way – teachers and parents, too, can play a significant role here, helping to organise fundraising events and keeping students motivated.

What role do students play during the expedition?
Our school expeditions are organised very much with an 'Outward Bound' / DoE ethos in mind. Students are encouraged to participate actively in all aspects of the challenge, and to 'muck in' while in camp, for instance by helping to set up tents, cook and clean.

Students will have plenty of opportunities to work together as a team, particularly on our activity-based challenges, such as the Arctic Adventure, where students will have to work together on the ice to achieve their goals.

Family Camping Safari in North Tanzania

A truly wonderful holiday and it all worked like a dream thanks to you and all the team.

Dr Lucy Black