Urban Expeditions

  • Our programs use NYC as a classroom.
  • Our students learn the value of diversity.
  • All programs are CUSTOMIZED to meet your needs, budget & larger goals.


New York City's rich human and physical resources provide unparalleled opportunity for learning and adventure. On NYC Outward Bound Schools' Urban Expeditions students travel NYC streets and neighborhoods to discover firsthand the forces that shape our city. They engage with people, food, places, and activities that are very different from their own experience.  We weave community service and adventure activities into each trip.  The expeditions can be aligned with school curriculum to provide an experiential approach to learning that complements content already being studied.

Typical Learning Targets for Urban Expeditions:

  • I can learn about and discuss stereotypes about people and cultures.
  • I can develop and demonstrate teamwork by completing tasks and challenges (e.g. navigation, meal planning).
  • I can document the different cultures, languages, religions, and foods I encounter.
  • I can share thoughts and responses from interviews I had with people from other cultures.
  • I can navigate around the city and get to activity destinations by using subway and street maps.
  • I can learn new skills for communicating and collaborating.
  • I can interact more effectively with teachers back at school.


“Our goal for the NYC Outward Bound [Schools'] Urban Expedition is "cultural exploration, experiences,and exposure." Most of our students are  from Washington Heights, so the idea is to get them OUT of this area to explore what the other areas of NYC have to offer. This would be most effectively done via exposure to cultures most unfamiliar to them …

The desired outcomes are for the students to face experiences that take them out of their comfort zone and in doing so broaden their perspective on the world and lead them to feel an increased appreciation and respect for differences (foods, religions, traditions, activities,ways of life, etc.) and an openness to learn from and interact with people who are different
from them in their future.”

Axeline J. Maisonet Middle School Coordinator, Lang Youth Medical Program
New York Presbyterian Hospital of Columbia and Cornell


For the past four years, Worcester Academy middle-schoolers have been leaving Massachusetts for New York City to go on our Urban Expedition course -- where they learn not just what an urban world is like, but how to navigate that world or any environment; how to be more confident while they’re doing so; how to have respect and empathy for cultures and experiences outside of their own;  and how to take that lesson home and into their futures. Read full article on their experience here.

“We are an urban school, we are a school that prides itself on having as much real-world education as we can, and [Urban Expeditions] are a real-world experience.”

- Eliza Hale, Worcester Academy Middle School Teacher

 “[Urban Expeditions teach students] to become aware of their global citizenship, of the importance of embracing their urban setting, of learning to be responsible.”

-John F. Fox, Worcester Academy Middle School Director (Massachusetts)

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