9 Reasons to Take a Gap Year!

History of gap year

Gap year, year out or year abroad is when student’s decide to take a break from their studies to do something else apart from studying, such as travel or work for a year. Gap year started in the United Kingdom in the 1960s with students travelling abroad to volunteer or work abroad during their gap year. Travelling from the UK to the USA or Canada for adventure and valuable work experience was another approach by some students for self-development. Several organisations were formed to help promote all the benefits and opportunities available for student to experience life abroad.

Gap year today

With competition for employment for young people and the increase of graduates with no employment after graduation, more students are now considering a year out. A year out for students is another option to gain valuable life experience, work experience and gives students a better chance of employment for the future. Students that take a gap year generally travel to destinations like Africa, Australasia or North America to either find paid work or volunteer projects abroad.

Volunteer projects include teaching, community development and care work. These voluntary projects make a world of difference to lives and highlights how voluntary work can help aid some problems of third world countries in education and health.

For some students paid work abroad is another popular option with some students favouring paid work as oppose to volunteer projects. Paid work for some students can help fund their gap year as well as enhance their CV. Favourite countries for paid work by students include the USA or Canada, although obtaining work permit is difficult in countries like the USA, if not impossible for some students. However, Australia or New Zealand are great alternative for paid work and less complicated for those considering a gap year.

So, without further ado, here are the 9 reason why you should take a gap year!

  1. Enhance your CV: Weather your volunteering or getting paid work, it all counts in your work experience for future employment or career.
  2. Teamwork: Learn to work as a group toward a common vision or goal.
  3. Make a difference: Volunteer for projects that improves and saves lives for less fortunate people.
  4. Improve your perspective: Enhance your perception on other cultures, lifestyles and your world knowledge of different countries.
  5. Learn a Language: Whether its French, Spanish, Swahili or other non-English language, a year abroad can expand your linguistics.
  6. Improve your university application: For students’ deferring university for another year it can make them stand out when applying to university in the future. Students that take a gap year are more certain about their course choice at university, given they’ve taken a year out.
  7. Confidence: Boost your confidence and be more self-assured in everything you do.
  8. Money management skills: Learn how to manage your finance.
  9. Fun: Meet new people, make friends, explore and have the trip of a lifetime.

Established in 1962 as a non-profit travel club for students, BUNAC is today recognised as a specialist in overseas work, travel, gap year and volunteer programmes with opportunities available in every continent. BUNAC has enabled over a quarter of a million people to explore the world and gain valuable life skills. BUNAC is ATOL protected and a founding member of the Year Out Group. http://www.bunac.org/gap-year/