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The Grizzly Gazette

The Grizzly Gazette

The Grizzly Gazette

A Breather

High school is the preparation for one to end up back in school, this time with an end goal. A newly graduated student, an eighteen year old, has three choices available to them after high school. 

One can choose to go back to school, now entering college. Some choose to stay home, to get a job and start a family. And finally, many people choose to take a year off. 

Gap year in the US is often frowned upon, simply because it’s not the standard path people expect students to take after high school. 

High school’s primary focus is for the preparation for college, so many students feel that after high school, college is the next expected step. 

What if one doesn’t want to live off a schedule anymore, and instead they want to travel the world? They want to volunteer to teach English at a school in Thailand, to learn a new language, to manage and protect the wildlife at the beautiful beaches in Spain, or to learn how to ski on the slopes of Canada’s photogenic mountains, or to sightsee in Brazil. A million things to do, to volunteer for. 

The experiences that are taught during the year or years will be remembered as unforgettable memories. The gap year allows one to visit different countries and offers opportunities and life lessons. 

People take gap years to reflect on what they want their next step in life to be. It gives people opportunities to gain skills and memorable experiences that one couldn’t have learned in a classroom. It also provides time for people to figure out their career path or life goal. 

About 83 percent of people decided to work instead of play while taking that year off. Some volunteer, work, or get internships abroad. The year off allows for people to find themselves and gives one room to grow. It gives people a stronger sense of identity and the ability to try new things, while also offering enough time for people to prepare for college.

It has a healthy impact on a person’s mental health, as well. The year can bring in new experiences and confidence that can help manage mental health and having a balance. This factor can help with assignments if one decides to begin college. 

While a gap year may seem like a good idea in theory, in reality, it can also be a financial burden on a person if they don’t have access to the necessary expenses. Some gap year programs often range from around 5,000 to 12,000 dollars. These expenses may also depend on the country the person wants to go to. 

Although several organizations recognize the value of gap years and offer gap year money grants and scholarships, there are several scholarships open to people that fund for gap year education and experiences if they want to continue learning.

One can also save money while in high school and contribute it towards the year they take off. Students that take a gap year have been proven to have a higher grade point average (GPA) and are more likely to graduate on time than those who don’t. Gap years are successful and effective. 

Anyone who doesn’t have a plan after high school should check out gap year programs or begin to make a year long plan. 


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