2/3 of college students struggle to launch their career after college.* We're here to change that.
Watch how our students are preparing for their next step by designing a semester of work, travel, and learning.
Leap Semester for?
You're in college
College Sophomore, Junior, or Senior — interested in gaining work experience while earning college credit, or simply taking a gap semester.
You need experience
You learn by doing and want to make something meaningful, meet brilliant people, gain relevant skills, and build your body of real work.
You learn best with others
You see problems as opportunities, and want to learn by helping a company succeed and learning with bright and caring peers.
You're a problem solver
You’re curious about fields of study that include:
You want to see the world
You’re interested in working with teams stateside or in any number of global cities such as Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, or London.
"Seeing my cohort come together to design their semester and support one another reminded me that people can and should live boldly."
Lydia Hong | Junior Industrial Design | New Jersey Institute of Technology
What will you learn?
You’ll begin by meeting your classmates in Chicago for a rigorous week-long Meetup. Together, with a group of instructors who’ve worked alongside Stanford, Kellogg, and an array of companies, we will focus on curriculum around five core competencies:
Define your strengths and weaknesses, how you learn best, and what you need to perform at a high level.
Learn how to identify key individuals in life and work, and how to invite them into the creation and building of a new idea.
Explore how storytelling can transform the way individuals & communities think, feel, and behave. You'll learn the principles and mindsets that will shape how you tell stories during your Leap and beyond.
We'll dive into the tools and systems that help organizations turn vision and goals into sustainable business models.
Understand how to find solutions to the most complicated challenges using this creative process focused on developing empathy, prototyping quickly, and learning from failure.
How will you learn?
In-Person + Online + In the Workplace
Though you’ll be learning about a variety of topics, all participants have the option to take a fully accredited online course in Business Operations.
The online course, combined with the internship at a startup, are designed to provide you with a working framework for understanding how a business works and operates. Its key activities include: Business Planning, Finance, Marketing, Systems and Data, Leadership, and Venture Creation.
Each week, you’ll engage in online discussions and coaching calls with an instructor who will provide you with feedback on your work and counsel related to your internship.
This course harnesses leading tools, skills, and philosophies from business experts and cutting-edge thinkers and invite students to apply them immediately, creating valuable learning and a portfolio of experiences.
How does it end?
Not just about a resumé...
At the end of your semester, you’ll meet back in Chicago to reflect on your semester, and present your experience and learnings to family, friends, and individuals from your community. EXPO is one-part TEDx talk and one-part thesis presentation wrapped up in one celebratory evening.
By the end, you will completed real-world projects, grown your network, gained practical tools, and most importantly, developed the confidence to navigate your next step.
How does it work?
- One-on-one support to pair you with a 10-week internship
- Pre-course focused on our framework to design your learning
- Full logistical support for housing, visas, insurance, and travel
- Intensive in-Person Meetup in Chicago around Five Interdisciplinary Competencies
- On-the-ground cultural activities and networking events in your apprenticeship location
- Online Course in Business Operations, with weekly calls with your instructor
- Weekly coaching to offer support throughout your courses and experience
- 15 Business and Entrepreneurship Credits from Columbia College Chicago
- Final EXPO event to capture and share your Leap Semester with peers and future employers
FOR FULL INFORMATION RE: TUITION AND FEES, PLEASE SEE OUR CONSUMER INFORMATION DISCLOSURE HERE.
Leap Semester Instructors and Team
You'll gain practical skills and knowledge that will help you in your career and life.
You'll establish valuable relationships with industry leaders and peers.
You'll develop the creative confidence and process to solve problems in any environment.
You'll embark on an experience that will shape the way you view the world, define how you can make it a better place, and provide the credibility to launch you in the next step of your career. And, you'll do so as a builder of a new type of educational model.
Yes. Upon successful completion of the program, students will receive 5 college credits through Columbia College Chicago. The following course designations for Leap Semester will appear on transcripts with student grades:
- Introduction to Marketing
- Business Writing
- Business Operations
- Entrepreneurship Case Study
- Internship: Business & Entrepreneurship
When you apply, you’ll let us know your interests and the skills you can provide a startup company, and then , you'll work with our placement team to determine where you might fit. We do our very best to make sure you are paired with a great team. More importantly, we will teach the skills and provide the community to make any experience rich and meaningful.
Columbia College Chicago students receiving financial aid can apply that aid to Leap Semester tuition. Students from other colleges will need to ask your financial aid office to create a simple Consortium Agreement with Columbia so that your financial aid can be applied.
Sage Corps is a global entrepreneurship program that sends top college students and young professionals abroad to work with tech startups. Built by a team with extensive global experience, we offer a unique opportunity for students to do impactful work alongside rockstar entrepreneurs. Whether you decide to work in Chicago, Buenos Aires, or Sydney, we'll ensure that you dive head first into a new culture. Together with our programming team, you'll work to find an experience that matches your learning goals during your Leap Semester.
- Intro to Business Operations (3 credits)
- Case Study in Entrepreneurship (3 credits)
- Intro to Marketing (3 credits)
- Business Writing (3 credits)
- Entrepreneurship Internship (3 credits)
Students live in shared accommodations such as shared apartments, homestays, or student residences (varies by country). Meals are provided in homestays, and kitchen facilities are available in the other locations.
Selected candidates receive an offer to join a specific company based on their skill sets and in line with their Leap Semester focus area (Design Thinking, Storytelling, or Business Operations); Leap Semester will have 2-3 start-ups flagged for the candidate
Accepted students will then skype directly with a matched startup CEO; all participants must receive a finalized offer to work with the startup directly from the startup CEO.
We currently have opportunities to work in the following cities: Amsterdam, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Chicago, Dublin, Hong Kong, Melbourne, New York, Paris, Santiago, Singapore, and Sydney.