What is a Gap Year?
Though many High School students go on to college right after graduation, some decide to take a year off from studies to travel, volunteer, study abroad or reflect on what they want to do with their lives. This is known as a gap year. There are many gap year opportunities for young adults who want to postpone their college education. However, it is important to plan intelligently so that your time away does not hurt your chances at college when you return.
How are You Going to Fund it?
Plan your gap year carefully to limit the cost of it. Talk with your parents about your decision. If you plan on traveling during your gap-year, get travel insurance. Also, make sure to have savings for medical emergencies or accidents. Try to work during the year as an intern or with a program or an organization that will pay enough to cover most or all of your expenses. They may be more than willing to assist you financially, especially if you can give valid reasons as to why you believe a gap-year is important (e.g., career exploration, maturity, etc.) and explain how the time away from the academic world will benefit you.
Get Accepted into a College
Many colleges allow you to defer enrollment for a year before beginning classes. Be sure the school you are interested in attending is open to gap-years and make sure to understand the associated requirements. It is easier to gain admission into a college before beginning your gap-year. However, it is not advisable to tell the college that you plan on deferring for a year before you apply, or they might not admit you. Submit your college applications prior to the completion of your senior year, and make sure you elect to defer enrollment for one year. This way, once your gap-year is complete, you can begin your education without the worry of having to get admitted to a school.
<-- Click to the left for Gap Year resources.