Work With Us

Help us build a more connected world, one student at a time — whether you’re joining a voyage as part of our staff or faculty or supporting life-changing study abroad experiences as a member of our home office staff.

Fostering Global Citizenship for Tomorrow’s Leaders

At Semester at Sea, we believe that the world is a better place when more young people have the opportunity to travel widely, learn about diverse cultures, and develop a sense of connection that transcends borders. That’s why we are always seeking faculty and staff who share our commitment to global comparative education. If you are ready to join our living and learning community on a Semester at Sea voyage, or if you want to explore opportunities to support our programs through our home office, you have come to the right place.

Employment Opportunities

Voyage Faculty

Teach aboard our floating campus as it travels to 10+ destinations around the world. As an integral part of our living and learning community, you’ll build deep connections with your students in and out of the classroom and share your expertise in what many of our return faculty call the most rewarding teaching experience of their careers.

Voyage Staff

Join a Semester at Sea voyage and help support our participants as part of our shipboard staff. Student life, health, and other professionals are instrumental in building our shipboard community and contributing to student growth.

Home Office Staff

Our innovative, collaborative home office team ensures smooth sailing for our voyages, with professional expertise in marketing, admissions, IT, and more. Positions are available on-site in Fort Collins, Colorado, and remotely across the U.S.

About the Institute for Shipboard Education

Semester at Sea is administered by the Institute for Shipboard Education (ISE), a private, 501c3 educational nonprofit located on the Colorado State University campus in Fort Collins, Colorado. All Semester at Sea faculty, staff, and home office professionals are employed by ISE.

Because all people, perspectives, and identities are welcome aboard our voyages, our community is stronger and our impact is more powerful and positive — at sea, at home, and around the world.

The foundation of every SAS voyage is a holistic exploration of the diversity of people, perspectives, and places we are privileged to visit. During the journey, voyagers encounter many moments of beauty, moments where injustices are striking, and moments of awe at the collective power of humanity to spark bold solutions to global challenges. Through all of these moments, Semester at Sea is committed to fostering an academic program and shipboard community inclusive of all identities. 

Working With SAS Has Benefits

Home Office Benefits

  • Medical, dental, and vision insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Retirement contributions
  • Paid leave and holidays
  • Week-long summer break
  • Wellness program
  • Tech stipend
  • LinkedIn Learning

Shipboard Benefits

  • Passage, room, and board on the MV World Odyssey for the term of employment
  • Monetary assistance for travel to and from the ship
  • Sail with companions and/or dependents*
  • Free or reduced-price in-country Field Programs when serving as a trip liaison
  • Medical emergency and evacuation insurance coverage

*Subject to availability and contingent upon health, safety, and capacity regulations; additional fees apply

What to Expect When You Join an SAS Voyage

Semester at Sea is administered by the Institute for Shipboard Education (ISE), a private, 501(c)(3) educational nonprofit located on the Colorado State University campus in Fort Collins, Colorado. All Semester at Sea faculty, staff, and home office professionals are employed by ISE.

Living & Learning in Close Quarters

Our shipboard community consists of over 800 participants including students, faculty, staff, Lifelong Learners, family members, officers, and crew members living together on a 25,000-ton ship. Faculty and staff engage with participants both in and out of the classroom, with opportunities to connect throughout the day and evening hours. Our most successful applicants are energized by close, ongoing interactions with students.

The Unique Rhythm of Shipboard Life

Living, teaching, and working aboard an ocean-bound ship is unlike an academic semester at a typical campus. Instead, the rhythm of the voyage dictates life on the ship. That means that the instructional tempo and community activities are built around long ocean crossings and short passages between ports. When at sea, classes meet nearly every day, including Saturdays and Sundays. Port visits are filled with activities, including fieldwork, hands-on learning programs, and independent travel.

How to Apply to Join a Voyage

Voyage Faculty and Staff Hiring Process

Interested faculty and staff can apply to work aboard our ship as part of a Semester at Sea voyage in four steps.

Hear From SAS Voyagers

Headshot of Bonnie Morris

Having sailed as a faculty member on three voyages over a span of almost 30 years, I can say without hesitation that these were the best experiences of my life: from taking students into women’s communities of the world, to making lifelong friends, to having a cocktail with Fidel Castro. In my writing life I’ve published numerous tributes to SAS and have shared my shipboard curricula in a recent book. I have never been happier than when walking up a gangway to an SAS voyage.

Photo of Michael G. Kaloyanides

Every one of my seven Semester at Sea voyages as a faculty member in World Music has been a life-changing experience for me. My classes for SAS were the most challenging teaching I’ve ever done, but also the most rewarding. My students were engaged and their excitement for this unique educational experience was contagious.

I served as a Resident Director for two voyages of Semester at Sea (FA16 and SP19). One of the most delightful aspects of serving as a staff member who was charged with supporting underrepresented students was seeing the thoughtfulness and experience students of color brought to international travel. Many of the students I worked with were from communities who were so supportive of their educational experience, and who had come together to make their student’s dreams of seeing the world come true. Many of these students brought nuance, compassion, and an informed lens to world travel. Some had a global perspective already as the children of immigrants or as folks who had moved through different cultures themselves. I saw in them myself: someone who had grown up translating, navigating different countries, and doing quick currency conversions in my head when my family visited relatives in Mexico. It made me a better traveler, and I saw that in the students, too. Their lived experiences were a strength to our voyage.

Frequently Asked Questions

Everything you need to know about applying to work with Semester at Sea and ISE

How can I prepare for my health and well-being on the voyage?

A health team (physician, PA/NP, counselors) are available on the ship. The medical capabilities while at sea are focused on urgent care and temporary stabilization of emergency medical and mental health conditions using basic medical supplies and equipment with a limited formulary. Very limited medications may be available; voyagers are expected to bring a sufficient supply of current medications for the duration of the voyage.

Counseling services typically focus on short-term, solution-oriented intervention to address situational issues. Due to the unique semester schedule (divided between port and sea days), counselors cannot meet with voyagers on a week to week basis or its equivalent. Extended psychological or psychiatric services are not available on the ship and are limited in quantity and quality in different ports.

In some regions there may be no access to emergency evacuation. While in port, local health care system resources are utilized, which can vary widely in capabilities.

Is the MV World Odyssey accessible and what accommodations are available?

On the vessel, elevators may not always be accessible. There are a limited number of wheelchair accessible cabins. Some field programs/classes may not be accessible to those with physical disabilities. Depending on the port facilities, tides affecting the gangway, and weather, those with physical disabilities may not be able to always disembark the ship.

Are there work opportunities for adult companions of faculty/staff members on the voyage?

On each voyage, a few job opportunities exist for the adult companions of faculty and staff members. These opportunities are not available to external applicants. More information about these opportunities is shared once most faculty and staff have been hired.

Can I bring my child on the voyage, and is there a babysitter on board?

Faculty and staff members may submit requests to travel with their dependent children. Fees apply. It is important to note that health and safety protocols, as well as capacity limitations, may prevent ISE from granting requests to bring dependent children. Children must also be at least 24 months old in order to sail due to safety protocol.

There is no shipboard “babysitter.” All dependent children must be accompanied by a designated caregiver. This is typically the non-working companion of the faculty or staff member. A Dependent Child Program is conducted daily for dependent children of faculty and staff. This program offers a study hall in the mornings and enrichment activities in the afternoons. It is operated as a parent co-operative.

Please contact Human Resources for information about specific voyage policies and rates.

Does ISE hire couples for the same voyage?

Yes. ISE has hired qualified couples for the same voyage in their respective areas of expertise. A guarantee that couples will be hired for the same voyage cannot be given. There are many dynamic factors that inform the hiring process for any given voyage.

Ready to Set Sail?

Launch your career’s next big adventure with Semester at Sea.