A Podcast by EF Education First

You know the power of travel: how it can bring a smile to your face, get your heart racing, and open your eyes. We’ve found a way to bottle up those emotions—those stories—and pipe them into your headphones. So take a few minutes every week to listen to transformative travel stories that defy our expectations, challenge our assumptions, and teach us something new about the world and ourselves.

Subscribe today to catch all of our awesome and awe-inspiring stories. 

Jonathan Vaughters’ Path to Pro
Jonathan Vaughters was just 19 years old when his dream of becoming a pro cyclist came true, but it didn’t happen how he thought it would. Instead of racing internationally on an American team, Jonathan (or JV for short) was offered a spot on a Spanish team. In this episode, JV will tell us how he took a leap into the unknown to follow his dreams, and how the personal and professional struggles he faced abroad made him into the person he is today.

Izzy: The Wanderlust Gene
Izzy and her father loved to travel. With him, travel was magical, and the world was full of happiness and wonders around every corner. Then, her magical world came to a screeching halt again, and again, and again. In this episode, we'll hear Izzy's story about a father, a daughter, and the wanderlust that binds them.

Nayeli: Micro Change
Nayeli has always been frustrated by the unfairness around her. She studied hard, and in college, she came up with an idea that she thought could change the world. When she went to test it out in a refugee settlement in Zambia, though, her ideas were put to the test in ways she never expected. In this episode, Nayeli will learn that change goes beyond the classroom, and how even little moments can have a major impact.

Joe: Record Time
Joe “Stringbean” McConaughy is an ultrarunner, which means he regularly runs long distances greater than a marathon. This past summer, he went to tackle his biggest challenge yet: running the entire Appalachian Trail. He didn’t just want to run it, though. He wanted to beat every known record set for running the trail—even supported records—alone. In this episode, we’ll hear about Joe’s epic journey to beat the odds, and how a whole lot of planning and perseverance can pay off.

Steph and Leanne: To Dubrovnik or Bust
Steph and Leanne spent weeks planning their vacation. They had color-coded itineraries, excel sheets full of price comparisons, and folders full of possible lodgings. Everything seemed nearly perfect. Then, everything went wrong. In this episode, we’ll hear how Steph and Leanne learned that travel doesn't always go according to plan but the journey can be just as rewarding as the destination.

New Zealand, New Rose
As a kid, Rose couldn’t wait to grow up. She wanted independence and adventure. She wanted to see the world. As a child of immigrants, however, she felt obliged to honor her parents’ hard work and sacrifices by staying in America. Then one day, she made a decision to just... leave. In this episode, we’ll hear how Rose took a giant leap to start her own adventure, and to find her true self.

Cleo: Rwanda, Reconciliation and Reemergence
Cleo thought she had an understanding of our world and the people in it—until she studied abroad and all of her preconceived notions were turned upside down. In this episode, Cleo will tell us how her trip to Rwanda changed her down to her bones; it impacted her view of the world, humanity, and herself. She emerged from her travel experience with a far greater sense of empathy and a more open-minded way of viewing the world.

Iceland Through Laura's Lens
What started with a quirky little tourism video turned into a two-week family vacation to Iceland, and eventually, into a brave new career. In this episode, photographer Laura Austin will tell us how photographing Iceland gave her the confidence to follow what she loves.

Jamie: The Mountains and the Sea
Jamie was in Ohio dealing with a quarter-life crisis and the loss of her grandfather. When she read about being an Au Pair, she knew she had to take the opportunity. In this episode, Jamie will tell us how the ocean breeze and mountains of Spain brought her solace at a time when everything felt impossible.

Meg: Growing Up Worldly
Meg is an American who grew up everywhere but America. She’s seen war, political unrest, violence. But all that paled in comparison to her most drastic move: America. In this episode, we’ll hear what it’s like to live all around the world, and what it’s like when you finally go back “home.”

Jason: One Step at a Time
Jason was living in St. Louis and feeling lost. He lost his marriage, his career, his sense of purpose; Jason just wasn’t Jason anymore. And then, he got a teaching job in China. In this episode, Jason will tell us how taking one big step away from everything he knew was the key to finding his path, and to rediscovering himself.

Tanya (Pt. 2): A Night at the Dead Zone
After college, Tanya put her Arabic studies on the back burner. Until one night in Germany, when she found herself in the middle of the dead zone, translating refugees' stories to a group of educators. An experience that eventually cycled back to her roots in middle America.

Tanya (Pt. 1): From Farmlands to Desert Dunes
After getting sidelined by a sports injury at 15, Tanya felt stuck and uncertain about her future. So when she read an article about study abroad, she just knew she had to do it. What she didn’t know was that her time abroad as a teenager was just the beginning of a lifetime of change. In this episode, we’ll hear how a nearly split-second decision to travel to Italy as a 15 year old eventually led her to the Middle East, where she learned about true tolerance and the nature of change itself.

Jack: What Happened in Bangkok
Jack was working in China and dreaming of a life in politics. But when his plans came to a halt, he wasn’t quite sure what to do next. Luckily, he had a vacation already planned out. In this episode, we’ll hear how a serendipitous stop in a Bangkok museum changed his life, and how traveling alone was the key to discovering his passion.

Spanish Genesis
Genesis never dreamed of being able to travel the world, but as she saw more and more of her peers studying abroad, she realized she could have that same possibility. In this episode, we’ll follow Genesis on a path of self-discovery that almost never was. With help from GoFundMe ®, Genesis was able to travel to Spain, where she found her true self. After that, her life would never be the same.

Inna: A Life Without Borders
Inna dreamed of leaving Ukraine. But for her, it was never as simple as grabbing her passport and just going. In this episode, we’ll hear how Inna persisted and expanded her borders to France and beyond, even when the odds were stacked against her.

Sarah Across America: On the Road to Yes

Sarah was feeling stuck and alone in Los Angeles. So, she decided to just…drive. In this episode, we’ll follow Sarah through a 16-day road trip from LA to New Hampshire. We’ll take you to National Parks and Texan bars, through big cities and little country shops. Sarah will dance, camp, and along the way, she'll realize the power of just going for it.

Colin: Thirst for a new perspective

Colin knew he needed to gain a new perspective on the world, so he bought an around-the-world ticket. On one of his adventures, he ran out of water while hiking a mountain—and that’s when he started to understand what people actually need to live. When he returned home, he didn’t know what to do with all his “stuff.”

Ekow: Lost and Found in the Dominican

After college, Ekow was looking for an adventure so he joined the Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic. In this episode, he tells us about a time he hiked the highest peak in the Caribbean with his students—and one of them goes missing. Ekow shares how this harrowing experience taught him the true meaning of community.

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