Pearls of Wisdom

Alzar School | 16.01.20

Here at Alzar School, we value community on a lifelong basis. In other words, we regularly seek feedback and welcome words of wisdom from our alumni. Such nuggets of advice can be powerful forces of motivation and serve to “spread the calm” for our incoming students. Additionally, advice from alumni often inspires our students to embody lessons from Alzar School when they return to their home communities. Life as an Alzar School student is not something that just anyone can understand! Our alumni and students have a distinctive bond given their shared values of community and adventure and desire to be leading forces of good in the world. The nuances of Alzar School life are not easily understood by those “beyond the bubble” and we are hopeful that wisdom from previous students will inspire our incoming Semester 16 students to follow their dreams and to cherish this very special time! Below, you will find pearls of wisdom from some stellar alumni:

Hello Fall 2019’ers

Our names are Abe, Abby, Carly, Grace, and Sam and we are members of the Alumni Advisory Committee at Alzar School. We are all alumni from either the Fall 2018 or Spring 2019 semesters. We are reaching out as you all because you are just 3 days away from starting a semester at Alzar School! As you all check your packing list and say your goodbyes to your familiar routine, we wanted to pop in to remind you of 5 important things: 

  1. Know that it can take about two weeks to settle into the Alzar School routine. It’s a big transition, so try and stay open-minded. – Alzar School Staff


  1. Get PUMPED! You’re about to experience a whirlwind of challenges, fun, academics, bonding, and leading – in the most beautiful places in the world. Live in the moment and take risks, because these next four months will fly by really quickly. – Abe
Abe crossing a river in Chile.
  1. It’s easy to become fast friends with everyone since you are all in such close quarters, but it is just as easy to know them from the first day of the semester. My advice to you is to sit with all of your peers, maybe ones not in your yurts, classes, and orientation groups, to get to know about their home life and family, why they chose to come, and other important things about them that wouldn’t come up in regular conversation. – Grace
Grace cooking in the backcountry.
  1. Appreciate the little things throughout your day that you don’t get to experience back home. Whether that be the small class sizes or the fact that while you’re kayaking and backpacking your sending school peers are probably in class. Though it’s difficult to adjust at first, the more you take advantage of the opportunities presented to you the faster Alzar will become home. Have fun (and take loads of pictures)! -Sam
Sam in Chile.
  1. This may sound cheesy but really seize every day. The time flies when you are at Alzar and the end will be over before you know it. Take every opportunity that is given to you, because this experience is incomparable to anything else in life. It can be hard to feel excited about getting into cold whitewater or chopping wood after a long day of school, but I promise that the memories you will make are unforgettable. I journaled every night to remember the important things of each day and I know it’s something I will enjoy looking back on as the years pass. -Abby
Abby on the Rio Baker.

No matter if you are feeling scared or excited, anxious or enthusiastic about the upcoming semester, know that you are not alone. You are about to embark on an adventure like no other that will lead you to discover life long friends, finding out more about who you are, learning from remarkable teachers, and exploring new places all across the world! Know that we are all thinking of you and so excited to welcome you to Alzar School. 

From all of us alumni, get stoked!


Abe (Spring 2019 from Brookline, MA)

Abby (Fall 2018 from Greensboro, NC)

Carly (Spring 2019 from New York, NY)

Grace (Fall 2018 from Asheville, NC)

Sam (Fall 2018 from New York, NY)