Teen Travel Network
DEI Policies & Statements
Learn more about Teen Travel Network's program policies
DEI Policies & Statements
Overview Statement: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
At Teen Travel Network, diversity, equity and inclusion are essential components of our mission to build confidence, curiosity, and connection in the next generation of global citizens through travel.
For TTN staff and students, as well as the communities we engage with in the field, diversity is about fostering representation and providing a safe and welcoming environment for all. Equity is about providing equitable treatment and experiences to all individuals. Similarly, inclusion is about building community and making everyone feel their voice is heard and welcome.
TTN invites teens from all over the world to participate in our programs regardless of race, ethnicity, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, religion, country of origin or any other basis.
As an organization dedicated to delivering life-changing experiences to students traveling abroad, we understand the value of open dialogue and are committed to building bridges with communities around the world different from our own. Real, positive change only comes from openness, acceptance and a willingness to both embrace diversity and advocate for inclusion.
Respect is inherent in all of our interactions among students, staff and all members whose communities we visit. . Respect means accepting and celebrating differences, and considering all points of view. That is the TTN way.
We’re committed to do our part to make the world a more respectful and accepting place for all.
TTN Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiatives:
At TTN, we understand that access to travel can be an economic and social privilege and the joy of travel is not always accessible to all communities. We are taking steps at TTN to promote the opportunity for travel for those who might not otherwise have access to these opportunities in the following ways:
- Inclusion Diversity Equity and Access (IDEA) Scholarship (link to website page): provides full tuition and flight costs to two students who qualify based on essay competition for a (student of color with demonstrated financial need) and one student (student with demonstrated financial need). Three runners up will receive full scholarships to participate in online programming with our sister company, Summer Springboard.
- GLA International Foundation: Our sister company’s International Foundation was established to support their host communities, however it now also provides opportunities for individual and student groups to travel on TTN programs with all expenses paid.
- Data collection and active recruiting of seasonal staff. We collect data on the diversity of our students so that we may strive to match this diversity among our staff teams to ensure we are properly supporting our youth during this impactful experience. We participate in active recruiting and posting initiatives that allow for us to source the widest network of qualified staff candidates to best match our students’ diversity needs.
Respecting Community and Group Agreements
TTN, a part of Terra Education Travel and our organizational team together all value inclusion and respect. We expect TTN students and staff to be ambassadors for their families, schools, communities, and countries and require that they treat one another, their local hosts, and program leaders with respect at all times. TTN students, program leaders and host community organizations will discuss and agree to expected behavior and co-create a Group Community Agreement. In this way, we aim to foment a culture of respect and shared investment in the goals of the travel experience.
TTN firmly believes that all students should be able to participate fully in educational and cultural activities in accordance with their gender identity, orientation or expression. As an organization, we strive to openly embrace and support students who have historically faced tremendous discomfort, uncertainty, and fear in pursuit of their educational aspirations domestically and abroad. In such circumstances, staff shall make every reasonable effort to provide rooming accommodations that are acceptable to the student and that promote a positive and purposeful group experience. As part of the pre-departure process, TTN will communicate with families to learn more about the individual needs of the student; our communication may also include discussing any existing local laws or cultural expectations that may negatively impact the student and their ability to safely express themselves, or pose a risk to the safety, life or liberty of students who have/are transitioning via their own legal framework. We ensure this information is relayed to each program to promote a positive and purposeful experience. TTN staff will ask all students their chosen names and pronouns and encourage the use of preferred names and pronouns within their groups. All of these statements apply to our staff teams as well.
TTN’s rooming assignments are based on gender identity, as communicated to TTN. If a student is transitioning (their gender) or identifies as non-binary or non-comforming, we will discuss with them what type of room they prefer or are most comfortable with (either male or female). All students and families are welcome to communicate with TTN to provide more information on what type of lodging experience will be the most comfortable for their student. TTN reserves the right for staff to change rooming assignments for any reason at any time and unfortunately cannot guarantee rooming preferences in all cases due to the nature of international and group travel. Students are not permitted to enter rooms that are not assigned to them unless given permission by the program staff.
TTN rooming assignments for staff are also based on gender identity and ALL staff also have the right to communicate with TTN to provide more information on what type of lodging experience will be most comfortable for them.
TTN is committed to creating an inclusive and safe environment for all students and staff, regardless of their gender, gender identity or expression, sex, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion or belief, country of origin or any other basis. You can learn more about our commitment here. If you have a request for room assignments or other notes, please contact us to share more 858-771-4886 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dorming on program takes place at multiple accommodations (Home Bases). “Home Base” refers to the onsite accommodation for students and staff on a Teen Travel Network program.
Utmost care is taken to provide safe and secure accommodations. Accommodations vary based on location, but all strive to be exclusive spaces reserved for TTN students and staff. If exclusivity is not possible, TTN aims to have all students and staff to be on the same floor or wing of an accommodation.
Home Base is our home away from home, a place to relax, the gathering place for meals and sanctuary for connection, team building and reflection after active days.
Most TTN programs involve two or more Home Bases. Because our programs are travel-based, it is likely that a program will split time between multiple Home Bases.
It is TTN policy that students remain in their rooms for the duration of the night once program leaders have instructed them to do so. By violating this policy (i.e. sneaking out of your room at night), you put yourselves and others at risk and this is grounds for dismissal from the program. Each night participants are informed of the time to return to assigned rooms and the time of “lights out” as well as schedule for the following day. If students need to contact staff after lights out, staff will communicate to students the best method to reach them during program orientation. For health reasons, we allow for and encourage eight hours of sleep a night for students, whenever possible.
Harassment & Discrimination Policy
TTN does not tolerate any form of harassment or discrimination in the workplace and while on programs. We promote a safe environment for all parties. Students sign a Code of Conduct document which states they understand our stance, and staff sign a Program Staff Policies document; both which state our stance as an organization. Any student or staff found to be harassing or discriminating will be removed from the program.
Sexual Harassment Policy
Sexual harassment in any form is not tolerated on a TTN experience and we stand firmly in our endeavor to unify the organization in standing firmly against sexual harassment. We aim to educate all persons involved in our programs on our guidelines to prevent incidents from occurring and to provide all staff and participants a concrete plan of action should an incident occur. TTN’s definition of sexual harassment includes, but not limited to repeated behaviors of a sexual nature that impairs an individual’s safety, wellbeing and ability to enjoy TTN programs. Any student or staff member found in violation of our policy will be immediately removed from the program experience.
Other Teen Travel Network Policies
Discover Teen Travel Network’s various program policies and statements of intent. Be sure to review each of these policies or statements before you participate in a TTN summer travel program:
- Program Policies Hub
- Animal & Wildlife Protection Policy
- Child & Vulnerable Adults Protection Policy
- Cell Phone Policy
- COVID-19 Risk Management (FAQ)
- DEI Policies & Statements
- Refund Policy
- Risk Management Policy
- Sexual Harassment Policy
- Student Safety and Supervision Policy
- Tuition Policy
- Water Safety Policy
Teen Travel Network
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