To Gap or Not to Gap?
by Susan Lee
Director of College Counseling
As the idea of a Gap Year is becoming more and more popular among American students, more students are considering it as they apply to college.
The Gap Year – or bridge year – is a year after high school when a student takes time away from school to travel, do community service, or work. Research has shown that the time off from school may help students to be more motivated and focused when they do return to the academic setting.
There are a variety of opportunities for Gap Years, and we collect information in the College Counseling office. There will be a fair in the winter where representatives from a variety of programs will be available to talk to interested students.
What we tell students, however, is not to focus on the Gap Year experience until AFTER you apply to college. The year off might seem like a wonderful idea when all those applications are looming. But, it might be less attractive in the spring when all of your friends are excited about their college options.
By applying to college in the fall, you are keeping the door to college open, and you are not closing the door to taking time off. Almost all colleges allow you to defer your attendance when you are accepted. The year off will be much more enjoyable if your college plans are set. And, it is much easier to submit applications when you have the support of the school and all of your friends are going through the process with you. Decide in the spring whether you want to take that time away from school.
Friday October, 8, 2010 at 10:37AM
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