We appreciate your interest in the Tufts 1+4 Bridge-Year Service Learning Program. This is a dynamic opportunity for your child to have an impact while learning and developing important skills. We view it as a transformational experience that will benefit communities and participants, and have ripple effects on the bridge year fellows when they begin their studies following their year of service.

We also recognize that, for many parents and students, it may be difficult to weigh all of the varying factors and decide if the program is a good fit. We offer the following information in the hope of supporting this decision that your student will be making from a parent’s perspective.

2015-2016 Parent Survey Results

Parents of our first class of Tufts 1+4 fellows have seen first-hand the tremendous impact this experience has had on their children. At the conclusion of the program, they were invited to participate in a parent survey where they shared their perspectives and experiences with Tufts 1+4.

100% of parent survey respondents said they would absolutely recommend the Tufts 1+4 program to incoming Tufts students and families.

100% of parent survey respondents agreed that as a result of participation in Tufts 1+4, their student has:

  • increased maturity
  • gained interpersonal skills
  • strengthened foreign language skills

Over 90% of parent survey respondents agreed that as a result of participation in Tufts 1+4, their student:

  • is better prepared for college
  • has become more confident
  • has become a better problem-solver
  • interacts in a more positive way with me and/or our family


2015-2016 Parent Testimonials

“Volunteering in Nicaragua before starting his Tufts engineering studies provided our son a perspective not available in the classroom.  We can already see the immense benefits of this life-enriching, cross-cultural experience.”

-Tufts 1+4 Parents Eric & Tsuneko Wenzel

“My daughter has had an incredible experience living with a wonderful host family and working at two very rewarding jobs. She has learned so much about the culture and language of Brazil. She has also learned to navigate all of these new things on her own and gained immeasurable independence, knowledge and maturity…I highly recommend that you take a little time to learn about the Tufts 1+4 program and discuss a bridge year with your son or daughter. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity that should not be missed.”

-Tufts 1+4 Parent Anne Harris

“I can’t tell you how grateful we are that our daughter has had the opportunity to participate in the 1+4 Program in Leon. Her self-confidence has blossomed, her perspective has broadened, her Spanish is excellent, and the world is before her in a way that would not have been possible without 1+4.”

-Tufts 1+4 Parent Diana Pilson

Interested in speaking with a 1+4 parent? Contact us!


Tips for families considering Tufts 1+4

  • It is essential to thoroughly read all the information on the Tufts 1+4 Bridge-Year Service Learning website before making any decisions. Each Tufts 1+4 placement has distinctive features and requirements.
  • When your son/daughter is considering the different placements, he/she should evaluate all relevant factors to ensure that the chosen opportunity will be positive for both him/herself and for the community. These include:
    • Service: passions, career goals, academic interests, desire to experience a new field or build upon past service roles
    • Location: urban or rural; domestic or international
    • Living arrangements: international homestay or domestic opportunity without housing arrangements
    • Requirements: language, preferred or necessary qualifications
  • Whether it is you or your son/daughter who has initiated about a discussion about Tufts 1+4, we hope that you will discuss the program in the spirit of openness. While we are excited about the meaningful opportunities that this program will provide, we recognize that it is not for everyone.  Fellows will only succeed in the program if they are driven by a passion to serve, a willingness to experience the unknown, a desire to cross cultural boundaries, and an openness to delving deep into themselves and their place in this world.  We wish you all the best as you discuss the program and the next steps for you and your prospective Tufts 1+4 applicant.

Additional helpful information

Below are links to some of our collaborating organizations’ web pages that are particularly addressed to parents. We suggest reading all of them regardless of which placement your student is interested in, since much of the information is universally relevant.

Amigos Information for Parents

City Year Parent FAQ

More Information about Global Citizen Year