According to the University of Delaware, the definition of “Gap Year” is a “temporary position (1 – 3 years) between college, graduate school or a full time job.” Many students are interested in “taking a year off” before buckling down to a “serious” job or graduate school. These temporary “in-the-meantime” jobs can provide experience, direction, emotional and cognitive growth, and satisfy curiosity about the real world.
Ask yourself these five questions:
- Do you enjoy traveling?
- Do you like learning new languages?
- Are you a hands-on learner?
- Do you like making new friends?
- Are you open to new ideas and challenges?
Other questions to consider:
- What is the cost, is it a factor and how can you supplement the cost?
- What type of health insurance do you need to have to make sure you are covered for emergencies?
- What are the health requirements (vaccinations) needed?
- What are the safety issues you need to be aware of when traveling?
- How will you stay in touch with my family and friends?
- How will you adjust to “culture shock” going and coming home?
- If you answered yes to the questions, think about taking a gap year, volunteering or studying abroad. Below are lists of websites that might help you find an outlet for your intellectual and academic enthusiasm.
See College Bound: Proven Ways to Plan and Prepare for Getting Into the College of Your Dreams for an extensive list of Gap Year Resources.