Northwest Outward Bound School’s payment terms and conditions are based on our investment in planning, staffing and delivering our courses. These expenses are not recoverable, therefore, penalties may apply for cancellation, transfer, or early departure. Before you make any further financial commitment, please familiarize yourself with the policies outlined below. All of the information is important as you are making a significant investment towards the student’s growth and development. By enrolling in Outward Bound you are accountable for and subject to the information contained below:
A $500 deposit is due upon enrollment to reserve a spot on the course. This deposit is applied toward the total cost of tuition and fees for the course. Deposit fees vary for Grieving Teens courses.
Deposit Refund Policy
The deposit includes a non-refundable $150 application fee. The remaining $350 deposit is refundable if the student cancels their enrollment more than 90 days before the course start date. The following are exceptions regarding the above deposit refund policy:
Admissions Packet and Paperwork
In order to be approved for a course, one must complete the application process including:
Northwest Outward Bound requires the return of the Admissions Packet by the due date assigned. Late return of application and forms will jeopardize the student’s spot on course. If the enrollment packet materials or tuition is past due the enrollment will be considered inactive and the student’s spot may be made available to other applicants. Cancellation penalties will apply.
To better ensure that a student is prepared and ready for an Outward Bound course, Northwest Outward Bound conducts interviews with each student. This interview will take place once we have received all paperwork for a student and must be completed prior to a student receiving final approval for their course.
Our goal is for every student to have a successful course. Failure to provide accurate and complete information could compromise the student or other participants' safety and course quality. By sharing all physical, emotional or behavioral conditions, we can help each student choose a course that will provide the student and coursemates with the highest chance for success.
Additionally, undisclosed conditions that result in early departure will terminate any eligibility for a refund. Please report injuries, illnesses, new medications or changes to prescriptions to a Northwest Outward Bound Course Advisor. If a student arrives on course with an unreported medical condition or other diagnosis or if type or amount of medication has changed since submitting a student’s medical form, and we have not been notified about these changes, the student may not be allowed to begin their course.
Due to the nature of the Outward Bound course, it is important that students are motivated and prepared to attend. In addition, Outward Bound is an “at will” program. We do not accept students who are enrolling due to the wishes or coercion of parents/guardians or the judicial system. Some students may not be ready for course when they enroll and may be better suited to wait another year. If students are found to be unwilling or unmotivated to attend during the application and interview process, they will not be approved for the course. Please note the $150 application fee will remain non-refundable if such is determined.
Students are required to send a copy of their pre and post course travel plans to their Course Advisor prior to course start and as soon as possible upon being approved for their course. Northwest Outward Bound asks that students delay the purchase of airline tickets until the student is approved for participation and has received confirmation that the course has adequate enrollment to meet the minimum group size needed to operate. If students purchase tickets before receiving this travel confirmation, and the course is cancelled or the student is not approved for the course, Northwest Outward Bound will not be responsible for the unused airline ticket. However, if the student waits to purchase airline tickets until we HAVE approved the student and sent travel confirmation and the course is then cancelled we will reimburse up to $150 to assist with the change fees so the student can use the airline ticket in the future. Documentation will be required for reimbursement. We are unable to reimburse students for gear or clothing they have purchased, hotels, or other expenses.
If a student has divorced parents Outward Bound will communicate with the parent whose information is included in the initial enrollment and note them as the primary contact. It is up to this parent to notify Outward Bound if additional parents/guardians should be included in communications. Similarly, this primary parent contact is responsible for informing any second or third-party payers of the payment and cancellation policies. Any subsequent financial obligation is the responsibility of the primary parent contact. Outward Bound only requires one legal guardian signature on the application.
Course Fees and Tuition
The total published cost of the course includes all tuition and fees associated with the course. Tuition covers the costs of food, instructors, permits, equipment, and travel needed during course. Not included in this total cost are personal expenses such as clothing, insurance (health and travel), travel to and from course/airfare, and baggage fees.
Full payment is due 90 days before the course start date. Be prepared to pay the balance due at this time even if the student has yet to submit their completed enrollment packet or has yet to be cleared to participate on the course. If the payment is not received by the deadline, this may be considered a cancellation and the student risks losing their place on the course and the $500 deposit.
Northwest Outward Bound cannot refund the cost of the course in the event that a student is unable to attend or complete the course due to an unexpected event, illness or injury. This also includes all voluntary cancellations for things such as motivation, scheduling conflicts, etc. There are no penalties if a student cancels more than 90 days before the course-start date with the exception of the $150 non-refundable application fee.
A graduated penalty system applies to ALL cancellations less than 90 days before the course-start date as outlined below. The cancellation fees listed below will apply to the full published cost. The charge IS NOT based on the amount paid to date on the day the student cancels.
For cancellations between:
If the student needs to cancel due to a documentable emergency (i.e. serious illness/injury of student, death in the family), we will give a refund based on the cancellation percentages listed above. Written documentation from a medical or professional must be provided to Northwest Outward Bound within 2 weeks of cancellation in order to receive this refund option.
Course Cancellations and Unavoidable Course Transfers
On occasion, relocating or canceling a course is the only way we can maintain our high safety standards. When complications such as inclement weather, environmental disaster or similar uncontrollable interruptions occur, we have the following policies:
Course Credit Policy
Course credit is non-transferable and must be used by the same student on a Northwest Outward Bound course before the end of the next calendar year. It can be used for future course tuition only. Refunds are not given in cases where the credit is used on a future course of lesser value.
If the course a student has chosen is full, they will be waitlisted. To reserve a spot on the waitlist, we must receive the student’s completed enrollment packet, including the $500 deposit. If a spot opens, it will be offered to the individual who enrolled first on the waitlist. This individual will have 24 hours to decide to take the open spot. Full payment for the course is due immediately if the student accepts the open spot and it is within 90-days of the course start date.
If a spot does not become available, or the student wishes to withdraw their enrollment, we will refund the full $500 deposit. If a spot does become available and the student elects not to accept it, the $150 application fee will not be refunded.
A student may transfer from one course to another one time with no penalty, provided it is more than 60 days from the course start date. A $100 Transfer fee will apply to subsequent transfers more than 60 days from the course start date.
For transfers less than 60 days from the course start date, 50% of the payment is transferable and the student will forfeit 50% of their payment. Outward Bound will not issue a refund for any transfers less than 30 days before the course start date.
Commitment to Excellence
Kurt Hahn, the founder of Outward Bound attributed the success of Outward Bound to the activities, which develop a positive attitude towards challenge and an ethic of service and compassion for others. His objective was to nurture youth with convictions that were rooted in four basic concepts: physical fitness, craftsmanship, self-reliance, and above all, compassion. Our aim is to help build self-esteem and self-confidence, as well as concern and respect for others. With that said, it is important that each participant come with a willingness to open themselves to the journey that Outward Bound begins. Some of the information below regarding parent/guardian contact may not apply to Adult course students. General policies regarding participation expectations apply to everyone.
Every instructor relies on the establishment of some basic rules designed to maintain physical and emotional safety. These rules are non-negotiable, reasonable and basic. All courses are a bit different but, at a minimum, we will expect the following:
IF YOU ARE EXPELLED FROM COURSE
Students will incur a 100% tuition penalty and may be subject to an additional Early Departure Fee to cover the expense of accompanying and transporting the student from the course area. This will vary depending upon the location of the student and the availability of resources. Students may be expelled from the course and required to leave if we determine that they are:
* Mandatory expulsion per Outward Bound USA & Northwest Outward Bound Safety Policies & Procedures.
If a student exhibits any of the above behaviors on course, they may be removed from course and will be subject to a $250 evacuation fee. Instructors work with each student individually and may employ additional resources available from the basecamp or consult the parent/guardian before removing a student from the field. However, students who break the law or endanger others may be expelled immediately. While we do train our staff in managing teen behaviors and design courses to support positive behaviors, our priority is the safety of the entire group, not individual student behavioral management.
In cases of Early Departure, the parents/guardians of students on Youth, Teen and College courses will be contacted and asked to make plans for the student to return home. Students on Adult courses will be responsible for making their own travel arrangements while at the basecamp.
The plan highlighted below helps protect the student’s financial investment with Northwest Outward Bound. If a student elects not to purchase one of these plans, you will be held to the terms of the Cancellation and Early Departures Policies as laid out above. We strongly recommend that you purchase the Tuition Protection Plan for certain types of cancellation or early departure, or invest in a third-party Trip Insurance plan, which has the potential to cover course tuition, airfare and/or emergency evacuation. Purchase of the TPP is optional but highly recommended.
If the TPP is purchased at least 30 days prior to the student’s course start date, they qualify for both cancellation and early departure protection for medical or family emergencies as outlined below. If the TPP is purchased within 29 days of course start date, they qualify for early departure protection only and not pre-trip cancellations. The TPP does not cover refunds for voluntary cancellations, “no shows” or early departure due to voluntary withdrawal, behavior, homesickness, low motivation, expulsion (as outlined above) or any unreported pre-existing conditions.
The cost to purchase the TPP is based on course length:
Cancellations with TPP
The plan covers pre-course cancellations due to illness, injury or family emergency (i.e. serious injury/illness of student, death of family member). Written documentation from a medical professional must be provided to Northwest Outward Bound within 2 weeks of cancellation in order to receive a refund. This plan does not cover cancellations due to undisclosed conditions or any voluntary reasons such as motivation, schedule changes or travel issues - please plan accordingly. The non-refundable enrollment processing fee and TPP costs are not eligible for refund. Participants are responsible for any travel change fees associated with the cancellation.
Early Departures with TPP
The plan covers early departure from course due to illness, injury or family emergency (ie death, or serious illness/injury of family member). Written documentation from a medical professional must be provided to Northwest Outward Bound within 2 weeks of departure from course in order to receive a refund. Refunds will be prorated based on the number of days of course missed. The Application, Transportation, Toiletry Kit and TPP costs are not eligible for refund. Participants are responsible for any travel and medical costs associated with an early departure.
TPP and Transfers
The TPP coverage only covers the student’s Northwest Outward Bound course and will not extend to any other courses a student may take at another Outward Bound school. If the student chooses to transfer to an Outward Bound course not with the Northwest Outward Bound School, the TPP will be refunded if the transfer is greater than 60 days before the start of the original Northwest Outward Bound course. If the student transfers to another course within Northwest Outward Bound, the TPP and costs will transfer with them.
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