More high school graduates are choosing to take a gap year; a year between ending high school and starting their next path, often college or a career. During a gap year, a young person may decide to travel, explore opportunities in other fields, or take the time to learn more about themselves and what they want to do with their future. According to the American Gap Association, benefits of taking a gap year include “increased maturity, greater ‘ownership’ of the student’s education, increased self-awareness” while universities say that students who take a gap year have a better GPA and report being happier in their post-graduate careers.
Many young people are choosing to spend their gap year in our relational development programs, where they connect with nature, others, and themselves. Our nine-month immersion program is a perfect opportunity to spend time reflecting, planning for the future, and making choices for their lives. Our program meets Wednesday evening through Friday evening, and many people who join our immersion program are able to work during it, either as freelancers or nannies or through part-time opportunities. This gives them a chance to learn more about the natural world as well as giving them independence to earn a living.
The gap year is nothing new in other parts of the world, where it’s quite common in countries such as the UK and Australia. They’ve seen the benefits of avoiding academic burnout and giving young people time to plan and explore. Our programs are all about exploration, but in nature and in the self, making it an ideal gap year option. Learn more on our website and sign up for one of our relational development programs today.