Earn college credit while hiking the Appalachian Trail.

Make Your Education an Adventure of a Lifetime

Get to know the Hikers

The Semester-A-Trail Program is a unique opportunity for students who seek a learning experience that goes well beyond the classroom. Students in the program earn college credit while attempting a long-section hike of the Appalachian Trail. The experience offers students a synthesis of academic learning and outdoor adventure in an intensive, goal-oriented journey, immersing students in real-world competencies and challenges that build skills that last a lifetime.

Spring 2024 Cohort Enrollment Timeline:

  • March 1, 2023: Application for Spring 2024 Opens
  • August 1, 2023: Notification of Acceptance to Program for Spring 2024 (and earlier)
  • Early January 2024: Program Begins, Start of Spring Semester
  • Late April, Early May 2024: Program Culmination*, End of Spring Semester

*For those interested in a comprehensive thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail, there is the option to continue hiking following the end of the spring semester.

Read the FAQs

If you are interested in applying to participate in the Emory & Henry Semester-A-Trail Program, please complete the application linked below after reviewing the program FAQs above.

Apply for Semester-A-Trail

“The Semester-A-Trail provides an excellent opportunity for meshing academic learning with a big experiential journey, a very physical journey that connects learning and growth to life.”  — Jim Harrison.

The Semester-A-Trail Program offers students the opportunity to build independent studies and projects with broadened field-based implications. 

Beyond Academics, What’s Included?

  • Students in the Semester-A-Trail Program complete a wilderness first aid course
  • Students engage in immersive skill-building workshops and training
  • A complete hiking kit is provided that includes top-of-the-line backpacking gear and footwear
  • An on-trail hiking budget is provided
  • Program staff provide on-trail support for hikers
  • While on campus, students enjoy the College’s outdoor program facilities and activities


A student may transfer in from any college just for the Semester-A-Trail Program.  This option allows students to retain their enrollment privileges at their current academic institution while enjoying the benefits of being an E&H student.

Upon completion of the Semester-A-Trail, dual-enrollment students return to their institution of origin with the college credits earned during the Semester-A-Trail as quality transferable credits and newfound skills!