Top 5 reasons to take a gap year

Top 5 reason to take a gap year

1. Don't get burnt-out

Gap years give students something different to do that doesn't necessarily involve academics. You've just finished your high-school education, written your final exams, applied to university and are likely just a bit stressed. Jumping right back into education might negatively affect your grades if you're feeling overwhelmed or tired of the constant pressure to excel.

2. Life experience

University applications are a big deal. You're not just asked where you want to study but what you want to study which might very well lead to a life-long commitment to your chosen field. It's not common that people know what they want to do with their life right after leaving high-school, so why not take some time out to discover new hobbies or interests. You might discover a new passion on your travels, or you might learn something that changes the way you think and your priorities in life. Gap years give you the opportunity to totally reinvent yourself.

3. Earn academic credit

Many universities offer gap-year programs. These don't work like a traditional foundation years and won't help you get accepted to a university you wouldn't otherwise qualify for, but what they can do is allow you to post-pone your university education for a year while also gaining academic credit that might earn you a bursary or financial benefits.

4. Learn to be independent

Once you're finally at university, you'll have a lot more freedom, but you might also lose some of the support from friends and family that you've relied on in the past to help you solve problems (especially if you choose to study in a foreign country). You're going to need to learn things the hard way and how to act as an independent adult. You will make mistakes, but better to gain this life experience on a gap year where you won't also have to contend with the demands of higher education.

Become financially aware

Whether you're on your gap year or at university, you're going to have to learn to count your pennies. Knowing how to work on a budget is a skill that will benefit you throughout life and where better to learn that on a gap year? It's easier said than done, but over time, you'll become an expert on balancing expenses and savings.

‘Travel is not without risk. The risk needs to be kept to a minimum acceptable level without eliminating the sense of fulfilment for individuals’