A gap year is a structured period of time when students take a break from formal education to explore areas of interest in the United States and/or abroad via one or more planned activities like travel, foreign language immersion, internships, volunteer work, and/or work. For many, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Often students postpone starting college for a year and the gap year is taken between high school graduation and the deferred start of college.
Some gap year benefits – After a well planned gap year, students typically:
- Have pursued and clarified their interests through real-world experiences. They are therefore less likely to change majors in college and more likely to finish their Bachelor’s degree in four years
- Gain insight about themselves and their goals.
- Are more mature, focused, independent and self-confident.
- With multiple interests
- Unsure whether they want to pursue a particular major/career
- Without a clear academic focus
- Who are burned-out after high school.
- Apply to college.
- Get accepted to college and defer your college enrollment.
- Decide on the interests you want to pursue during the gap year and your budget.
- Identify gap year programs within your budget, that let you explore your interests.
- Check the quality and safety of those programs.
- Select and register for the gap year programs, you wish to pursue.