Life-Changing Learning in Nature

For High School Juniors and Seniors

Why Choose Maine Coast Semester?

Maine Coast Semester offers a unique, four-month educational program that takes students out of the traditional classroom and into a hands-on, experiential learning environment. Our program includes backcountry adventures, science field labs, and daily opportunities to learn about sustainable living. Graduates often describe Maine Coast Semester as “the place where I learned how to make a difference in the world.”

During the semester, students participate in rigorous and relevant academic classes, and interact with a diverse group of peers and educators from across the country. The natural landscapes of Maine, including rocky shores, salt marshes, boreal forests, and sandy beaches, serve as the primary setting for this educational experience. Students also have the opportunity to become part of a close-knit community, where we work collaboratively on tasks such as farming, wood splitting, and other responsibilities that are crucial to the functioning of the group.

Maine Coast Semester is the perfect choice for students looking for a unique and meaningful educational experience that will prepare them for college and well beyond. With our emphasis on hands-on, experiential learning, you will gain the skills, knowledge, and confidence to make a positive and lasting impact on the world.

What's so unique about a Maine Coast Semester experience?

The Coast of Maine

Over 400 unspoiled acres on the Maine Coast are yours for inspiration, education, and exploration, whether you’re modeling tidal changes, designing energy-friendly buildings, or hiking our network of trails.

The Academics

With a 3:1 student-faculty ratio, a rigorous curriculum, and the natural world as a laboratory, Maine Coast Semester challenges you to break through classroom walls and not just learn, but do.

The Backcountry

Not every classroom is in a room. You’ll learn life-long skills to hike, paddle, camp, and explore the natural world.

The Farm

Put your head, heart, and hands to work growing and harvesting food and caring for livestock on our sustainable, working organic farm. You won’t just learn about sustainability, you’ll live it.

You should go!

“I learned what a positive and inclusive community really is, and I gained a much deeper appreciation for the natural world. I pushed myself academically through the small class sizes and hands-on learning.”

10 years later...

“…I am continually discovering new things about myself that I can trace back to Chewonki. It has been a hugely transformational experience, and not just in the short term.”

I was challenged...

“…academically, socially, and my world-view grew. I made lifelong friends who I am still in touch with, and I carry the memories and lessons from my time at Maine Coast Semester with me every day.” 

My semester experience...

“…was formative in my college choice, and my path as an educator. It was one of the single most impactful experiences in my life, and has inspired me to create and build community where I go.”

What Maine Coast Semester Alumni Have to Say!

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To the Point

Our Student Blog


The Amazing Lambcam!

It’s back! The Amazing Lambcam is standing by to capture the birth of our spring lambs.


When I arrived at Chewonki, I was most nervous about the infamous Species Quizzes. I had been told terrifying tales …

Chewonki Chicken Chores

One of the things that really sold me on coming to Chewonki was the farm. As a total city kid, …

A Stellar Sighting: Finding the Steller’s Sea Eagle

In our Natural History and Ecology of the Maine Coast class we have been talking a lot about birding. Luckily …

Morning Kitchen Chores

Every morning we have to be dressed and out in the frigid cold by 6:55 to be ready for chores, …

Connecting at Chewonki

Although my time here at Chewonki is still in its beginning stages, I have found so many deep and meaningful …

Hanging with Hobart: Welcoming Life at the Farm

Last night, nearing the end of study hours, Semester 70 was scattered across various rooms when we received some very …

Ready, Set – Ringette!

During my first week of school here, I had a meeting with my advisor, Andrew, that was scheduled for one …

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