Caroline is a dynamic and creative person with a special understanding of how to maximise the experience of young people away from home for the first time. She has over 10 years’ experience in summer schools, and having lived and worked abroad as an English teacher and director, she appreciates the challenges and rewards that studying away from home can bring. Dedicating the year to organising the Summer and Easter courses alongside her work in the Galapagos Islands, she is able to ensure each course is run to the highest standards of care and education.
After her undergraduate degree at the University of Nottingham, Caroline completed an MSc at King’s College London in Environmental Science with Development, specialising in the effects of tourism and the local community on the Galapagos Islands and its future. She often helps foundations and organisations working as a consultant.
Mike oversees the students’ welfare throughout the course. He makes sure every student is settling into the course well with weekly one-on-one meetings. As a full-time teacher the rest of the year at a leading international boarding school, he is really enthusiastic and creates a stimulating and interesting programme of study. This ensures each student is making the most of their lessons and focusing on areas of their English with which they struggle.
Who are we? Coast to Coast was started by Caroline Drewett, a young education enthusiast, who was disappointed by the ‘corporate’ summer schools she had previously worked on. Students were a number, who were there to fill beds, rather than to be helped and encouraged in their studies and personal lives. As a result, Coast to Coast was born, with the help of Matt Kelly, an experienced teacher who undertook the role of Course Manager for the first few years.
The course’s main focus was to nurture students to achieve their potential in English, through lessons, sports, activities and unique and specially-designed opportunities. The focus was less on grammar, and more on confidence building, and students had the opportunity to discover their passions through entrepreneur days like ‘Dragon’s Den’ whereby each student creates and designs a socio-economic product that they believe will change the world.
In 2012, Coast to Coast had its first blind student attending; a 14 year old girl who showed positivity, determination, and an incredible work ethic with her studies and her desire to continuously improve herself. She inspired Caroline to offer places to other blind and partially-sighted students, and a number of governments now support the courses, which are the world’s first international courses for blind students.
2012 also saw the first two students from the Galapagos Islands attend, via a scholarship scheme funded entirely by Caroline. Cesar Rojas Calero and Max Puga attended our 4 week course at Belmont School, and the experience was eye opening for them. Since then we have been proud to offer this opportunity to numerous other students who have shown dedication and willingness to learn English and to challenge themselves. One exceptional candidate, Tobias Castro Kugele has returned twice to the course, due to his love of learning and his maturity. Coast to Coast fosters students to gain new experiences, and going from a small island in the Pacific Ocean of 5000 people to course life in Surrey with day trips to London is certainly exhilarating for all involved! We are now partners of the highly-regarded Charles Darwin Foundation, and we work together to further education on the enchanted islands.
We are continuously improving our courses, to ensure that each student maximises their time with us on the course. We now work with governments, media and charitable organisations, which has resulted in us being considered leaders in the field of pastoral education. As specialists, we take our role with young people extremely seriously, and since Michael Strickland has joined our team, our academic curriculum has advanced considerably. He dedicates a considerable amount of time to furthering the programme, so that students will have an experience that stays with them a lifetime. We are proud to offer boutique experiential learning, and we are continuing to flourish, helping our students to excel as they grow into young adults.