By Steve Weinstein
By Devon Maloney
By Tessa Stuart
By Alison Flowers
By Albert Samaha
By Jesse Jarnow
By Eric Tsetsi
By Raillan Brooks
Offering "an adventure in service," Global Volunteers (800-487-1074) provides the opportunity of a lifetime for people of all ages to travel the world and help the less fortunate. Programs, which run from one to three weeks and span 20 countries, cost $350 to $1995 (airfare not included). College credit is also available.
Catering to college students as well as adult professionals, People to People International (816-531-4701 or www.ptpi.org) will help you create a two-month-long unpaid internship while sharpening your professional or academic skills along the way. Two-to five-week courses are also available.
For 35 years, the School for International Training (800-336-1616 or www.sit.edu) has helped eager college students to immerse themselves in international culture. With a variety of semester-long programs in 50 countries, the institute admits applicants on a rolling basis.
Want to spend a semester navigating the globe with 650 college students and adults? Consider shipping off for the upcoming fall or spring terms with Semester at Sea. Ranging in price from $13,250 to $18,150, the floating college allows those enrolled to obtain a full semester of credits. For more information, visit www.semesteratsea.com.
You assimilated into Anglo culture. You happily graduated from Spanglish to English. But now, the only Spanish you have left is in your surname. Looking to reidentify with your roots? Take "Spanish for Spanish Speakers" at the Instituto Cervantes and burn that English-to-Spanish dictionary. Classes begin September 27 and are available once a week at night, for $350, and in the evening, for $380. Call 689-4232 for details.
Looking for a new way to make it to quitting time? Learn Spanish, German, or business English from the confines of your cubicle through the Language Connect Institute, which offers personalized courses using software, e-mail, and the Net that will help beef up your résumé or allow you to impress your neighbors. For more information, visit www.languageconnect.com.
Meet Barry Farber. He's the dazzling dinner party guest who can bounce between Russian, Dutch, Cantonese, Italian, Japanese, and Swedish all in the blink of an eye. Be at the Learning Annex on September 16 at 7:30, when the secret to learning any language will be revealed. The cost is $49. For more information, call 371-0280.
Aim to be different. Beginning September 22, New York University (998-7030) will offer a colorful collection of language courses that run the gamut from Arabic to Vietnamese. Whether you're planning an exotic trip or just want to browse Korea Town's restaurants with confidence, there's probably something for you. Basic and advanced classes are available and cost $460.
Are bass players merely frustrated guitarists? Not the ones at Bass Collective (741-0091), where, starting September 13, they'll get you up to speed on jazz, rock, funk, Afro-Cuban, Brazilian, and fusion stylings. A week of full-time training costs $600, with five- and 10-week programs available as well.
Mannes College of Music (580-0210) has everything the world's got to offer a potential virtuoso. Although the ultracompetitive classical division is already closed, the extension division still beckons, from September 21 on, at $9000 for a full year of instruction. This is serious stuff, so be prepared to audition.
You go there to listen to music; why not play it there, too? The 92nd Street Y School of Music (415-5580) offers classes in theory as well as private training on everything from brass to percussion. The fall semester starts in October, with a free open house on September 16. Prices vary.
Coney Island High is not in Coney Island, East Broadway has nothing to do with Broadway, and the Third Street Music School Settlement calls 11th Street home. It does, however, run a wide variety of vocal and instrumental courses, which cost $856 for 32 weeks. Classes begin September 13. For more information, call 777-3240.
Since its opening in June, entrance tickets to the Bronx Zoo's (718-367-1010) Congo Gorilla Forest have been very hard to come by. During a special "Breakfast in the Congo," though, patrons will get to absorb the sights and sounds of the re- created African rain forest before the exhibit opens for the day to the public. On October 9, 16, 17, and 24 from 8:30 to10:30. The cost is $45 for members, $50 for nonmembers.
Eager to go "Peach Pickin" in Port Murray, New Jersey? A tour of the town's orchards will be sponsored by the Brooklyn Botanic Garden (718-623-7200) on August 7. Participants will receive three pounds of peaches and a baked chicken lunch and an afternoon tea party during which they'll learn various flower-drying methods. Transportation, entrance, food, and tour charges are included in the fee. The cost is $55 for members, $61 for nonmembers.
Learn how to cultivate a grove rich in fragrance, beauty, and ghostly mystery at the Horticultural Society of New York's (757-0915) slide presentation "The White Garden: Luminous Bloomers." The one-hour seminar, given by Lois Sheinfeld, will take place on September 29 at 6:30. The cost is $20.
Undo the damage that Jaws has inflicted on you at the New York Aquarium's (718-265-FISH) evening seminar "Shark Tales and Other Myths." Underwater photographer Rick Sammon and his deep-sea colleagues will dispel some of the untruths about the sharp-toothed predators. Proceeds from the event support the aquarium's education and research efforts. On August 7 at 7:30.