Your child's safety is our top priority. Period.
Parents, thank you for trusting us to provide a life-changing experience for your child. We take this responsibility seriously. For over 15 years we have been providing safe and rewarding educational programming to middle and high school students from all over the world. Among a million of things our team does to prepare for the Summits, SAFETY is our absolute first priority.
As our parents prepare to send their children off to their first Summit, it's natural to feel apprehensive. For many, this is the first time your child will be away from home and away from you. Even if it's not the first time, the feelings of concern are normal. We get it. We have been there ourselves. That's why we wanted to share what we do to ensure your children are safe while having the time of their life at the Summit.
The fact is, we are obsessed about the safety of our students and teachers. Through many years of experience and continuous focus on safety we have developed a number of proven measures and protocols to ensure a safe and supportive learning environment.
Leader Qualifications and Supervision
It starts with the best teachers. Most of our teacher leaders and program staff have worked with us for 3-10 years, they are veterans when it comes to student travel, and are truly passionate about working with students like yours each summer. They participate in an extensive application and interview process in order to be selected.
All teacher leaders and staff:
- Are CPR and First Aid Certified.
- Undergo a background check.
- Complete extensive annual Safety and Emergency Preparedness training.
- Receive reviews based on participant surveys.
While on program, students are grouped in teams of 10-12 students per teacher leader. One of the best student-to-teacher ratios among student program providers, it allows our teachers to have one-on-one interaction with the students while making sure that the whole group is learning and interacting well as a team. Our teacher leaders' singular focus is on student safety and learning, while other staff takes care of all program logistics.
We Set the Standard for Safety
In addition to selecting the best teachers to work with and care for your children, we put our extensive operational experience to work to mitigate any risk or any issues that may come up.
We demand the highest quality and safety standards of ourselves, and our partners. From our university partners, to transportation companies, and event sponsors, all are required to have stringent vetting and training practices for their staff, and well maintained equipment and facilities.
We make smart plans and take precautions. Each Summit itinerary is thought out down to the smallest detail, with an eye for safety. We avoid public events and steer away from crowded places. We partner with urgent care facilities to ensure we respond quickly if there is ever a need.
We train and prepare our leaders—for everything, from how to handle a crisis, to more common things such as dehydration, sunburn, or cuts and bruises requiring first aid.
All students and leaders have an emergency phone number on their lanyards. This number is shared with parents as well and is manned 24/7 when the Summits are in session. In the event of a significant emergency the on-call duty officer can activate an Emergency Response Team.
We keep our parents informed and partner with them every step along the way. If your child scrapes a knee, you will get a call. If there is a more serious medical issue, a staff member will be with your child at all times and will keep you informed at each step.
We are in constant contact with our site staff and our partners about local conditions, and monitor media and law enforcement authorities for events and their potential impact. In the event of a slightest possible or perceived risk, we are able to redirect our groups immediately.
Prior to travel, we assess individual student needs, from allergies to medical conditions and special accommodations. As a parent, providing complete and accurate information on the Health Form is critical to ensuring your child's well-being on program.
We've got your child—from start to finish. If your student is traveling alone, our staff will meet them at the airport and transfer them to the campus in a private motor coach. We track flights throughout the day in case of delays or cancellations and adjust plans if needed.
We know how to manage student groups for safety. From a "buddy system" and nightly room checks; to our close supervision, experienced senior staff on site and 24/7 support from the Program Office—all are designed to keep your child safe and you informed.
As you can see, safety is our thing. But we need your help, too. Please read on.
students and parents Play an Important Role
Staying on campus, making new friends, and building leadership skills are all things that will impact your child’s self-confidence and independence. As Ambassador Leaders, all students are expected to display leadership conduct while interacting with peers and leaders. As parents, we ask for your support in preparing your child for this one-of-a-kind growth opportunity.
Some specific expectations of students when it comes to safety are:
- We have a zero-tolerance policy for bullying, violence, drugs, and alcohol.
- Students are required to use the "buddy system" (always with at least one more student) at all times, no matter what age.
- All students must be on time to and from activities, and abide by the safety rules when off campus.
- We perform count-offs every time the group moves locations.
- Nightly room checks are conducted each night and curfew is strictly enforced, with staff patrolling the residential halls.
- Parents are notified of every incident, no matter how minor.
I am proud of the fact that for almost two decades, we have operated our programs without major incidents because of our team's commitment to safety, and the measures we have developed, as well as the amazing students and teachers who participate in the program. I hope the information we shared helps soothe some feelings of nervousness when it's time to drop your child off at the Summit.
If there are any questions we can answer, or anything we can do to ensure your child has the best experience possible on their Ambassador Leadership Summit, please don’t hesitate to ask. Remember, the safety and well-being of your child is ALWAYS our #1 priority.
We'll see you soon!
By Natasha Porter
Natasha is the Founder and CEO of Ambassador Leaders. As an educator and business leader, her life’s passions are international education and helping young people and teams reach their full potential.