What Is A Gap Year And What To Do In Your Gap Year?

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Written by Aaliya Shaikh

A piquant and humorous writer with the love to scrawl and create. For me writing is supreme. To believe that I can give words to my thoughts and connect to people through it is extraordinary.

August 26, 2021

What is a gap year? What to do during a gap year? These are some of the questions that a student might wonder when they decide to take this big step. Whether you want to take an adventurous time out of your education or provide parental support to your child or you wish to study and work in that period; this is a crucial year that needs a lot of thinking and planning. 

What Does Gap Year Mean?

First to answer your, “What is a gap year?” question. It is a constructive annual break of 12 months that the students or individuals take to pursue other aspects and interests that do not come under the regular everyday life or line of work. This is also known as the “sabbatical year” where you spend your time either going after activities that will in any way contribute or supplement to your regular work or will be entirely unrelated to it. 

What To Do In A Gap Year?

Now that you know what is a gap year, let us see what are the things that you can do in a gap year. Starting with the terms such as:

Prep Year Or Bridge Year

The reason why people use these terms for a gap year is that many students take this 12-month hiatus to prepare themselves for what’s coming next. For instance, imagine that you graduated and wish to pursue a master’s abroad but don’t have enough experience or financial aid to do so. This year will act as a breather as well as a preparatory year that supports you for the upcoming hurdles you are going to face. Many students study and work at the same time so they can earn some money while preparing for the competitive exam they are about to give. 

Broaden Your View | What Is A Gap Year

A flock of students choose to take advantage of this year by broadening their perspective and schema about the “outside” world. They use this time to learn about the world around them and get knowledge about social issues, awareness, and global outlook. Taking a defer year is a great time to travel around and immerse yourself in a different culture. You can travel your nation or move around the world to see what life has to offer. 

Recommended Read: The perfect travel checklist for international students.

Gain Key Skills

Another set of students and individuals use this time to sharpen their skills. Many students take a defer year and choose to learn something new. Maybe you are someone who enjoys designing, you can use this time off to learn the right software and sharpen your skills in designing. You can even try interning and working in that field to gain relevant experience. This will largely contribute to your experience as well as help you decide what major you want to pursue in your postgraduate studies. 

Earn Money | What Is A Gap Year

The reason why we mention this as a separate point altogether is that many students’ sole reason to take a year off is to earn. Before starting university or postgrad, they wish to earn money and save up. One way is to do this is through odd jobs, freelance work, start something of your own, or you can intern in your field and earn while gaining experience. It is entirely subjective. Earning money is always going to be beneficial for you if you use it in the right way. 

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Develop Contact

A defer year opens the opportunity to meet new people and socialise at your convenience. You can go out and see a wide range of people and make useful contacts. These contacts will later help you in life; especially in references and job opportunities. You can even make international friends and build relations. You never know when a certain contact might come off as useful. 

Challenge Yourself

Our last suggestion is intangible but very important. This year you get to challenge yourself in ways you never thought possible Step out of your comfort zone and experience new things. Go out and see life up close. The new experiences will not make a difference in your work CV but will surely boost your life CV. Go trek through the jungle, climb mountains, run a marathon for charity, volunteer in third-world countries, or just go do deep-sea diving. Everything will help you see a different version of yourself. 

We hope that through this blog you were able to understand what is a gap year and the different ways you can utilize this year. Make sure whatever you do makes you happy and contributes to the well-being of your life. Good luck!

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