College 101: Do I Take a Gap Year?

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A lot of college-aged students struggle to decide whether to take a gap year before starting college or whether to get started with their degree as soon as possible. On the one hand, traveling gives you a chance to let loose and have fun before you begin to study. On the other hand, the sooner you start college, the sooner you can graduate and start moving up the career ladder. It’s a tough one to decide on, especially when you feel really torn.

For anyone with a passion for travel who wants to get started with their degree as soon as possible, it can be a struggle to decide what to do – whether to take a gap year of start college. You want to ensure that you get the education that you require, of course, you do, but there is also a part of you that wants the chance to explore, let loose, and have some fun.

What if there was an option that gave you the best of both worlds – getting your degree started and being able to travel? Well, the good news is, there is – it’s called a sandwich degree, this is where you take a year out in the middle of your course to learn at another university or institution or to spend a year gaining invaluable industry experience.

Like the idea of a sandwich degree or a college course that allows you to take a year out? Want to know more about the benefits of this kind of course? If the answer is yes, then read on for everything that you need to know.

You get the best of both worlds

If you have always dreamed of traveling but are also keen of getting your studies underway, taking a sandwich course could be the answer because it will give you the best of both worlds. It will allow you to get your studies started and plan to do some traveling. While you wait for your sandwich year to come about, you can always use each of your college breaks to travel. Whether you head to Palm Springs for a fun break with the girls or to Europe to soak up some culture, it doesn’t matter, all that matters is that you get to see as much of the world as possible. Seeing the world is good for you, as it teaches you more about the world and the hundreds of different cultures, religions, and ways of life within it. It teaches you tolerance and understanding and makes you a more understanding person. It will also make you more grateful for what you have, as you will see other people and communities leading their lives with much less.

All experience is good experience

Whether your year out is spent studying at another college or completing a range of different internships, it doesn’t matter. A year out is your chance to gain as much experience as possible, whether that is educational experience, learning in another way, or industry experience, that doesn’t matter. All experience is good experience – anything that will enhance your resume and boost your chances of career success is a good thing. Even if you complete an internship in your dream field only to realize that it’s not actually what you want to do, that doesn’t matter, because you have still gained knowledge about the industry, as well as a range of transferable skills.

Time out may give your more focus

A lot of the time, college students don’t really know what they want to do when they graduate from college. This uncertainty can make specializing a little difficult, which can make landing that dream job somewhat of a struggle. However, for a lot of students, taking time out to gain experience at another academic facility or within the sector that they dream of going into, gives them a better understanding of what it is that they want to do when they graduate from college. You can get so much focus by taking the time out to study or gain experience abroad. A gap year during your degree can tell you a lot about what you actually want from life, which when it comes to your future, is important.

 

You will have the chance to network

Did you know that when it comes to landing your dream job, it’s often as much about who you know as what you know? That is why it is so vital to build up contacts within the industry that you plan on working within. Bearing that in mind, this is another reason why a gap year during college can be so beneficial. If you use your gap year to undertake an internship, when you graduate after completing your final year, you may end up being offered a job at the place where you interned during your year out. A lot of the time when it comes to career opportunities, it’s about who you know, not what you know. That’s why getting out into the working world can be so beneficial, as it can give you the opportunity to build connections that could come in useful once you have graduated from college.

 

You’ll be able to travel

One of the most obvious benefits of taking a year out during college is that depending on what you arrange to do during that time; you may be able to travel. If traveling is your passion, there are plenty of ways that you can use your gap year to travel and improve your skills at the same time. Whether that is attending college abroad, such as in Singapore and living there while you learn – if you are going to do this, get an idea of the average hdb rental price in the area, to ensure that you don’t pay over the odds for your accommodation – or taking on an internship abroad, it doesn’t matter. All that matters is that you get the opportunity that you want/need to travel and see more of the world while honing your skill and gaining valuable experience.

Break up three years of study

A lot of college students go through college wondering what they can actually do with their degree. By the third year – their final year – they are panicking about what the future will hold for them. To prevent this from happening to you, choosing a sandwich course could be the answer, as taking a year out can help to break up three years of study and can make finding your calling in life a little bit easier. By taking a year out to study abroad or undertake an internship, you get to put what you have already learned into practice. You get to see what adult life is really like and how hard living alone can actually be. The fact is that if you leave college knowing what you want to do in life and the education behind you to make these dreams a reality, this a win, as few people are lucky enough to be in this situation.

So there you have it, a guide to choosing a course that has a gap year in the middle of it, and what the benefits are of choosing to do so. The fact is that choosing to undertake a sandwich course comes with many benefits, and can make the process of getting a better result at the end of your course more likely. It can also help to make landing the job of your dreams more likely, especially if you use your time wisely and build up a network within the industry that you want to get into.

I hope you enjoyed the post and that it helped you out! Have you thought about taking a gap year? Let me know!

Thanks so much for reading, as always <3

Xoxo, Rae

 

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