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2020-21: Greatest Gap Year Ever, Great Opportunity for Community Service

August 14, 2020

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With unemployment as high as its ever been and colleges desperately seeking students it seems like an optimal time to start college, especially since a study cited in this USA Today article shows that deferring college for a year will “cost” over $90,000. But, as a Gap Year advocate indicates, taking 2020-21 off might be a great choice:

About 16% of high school seniors are considering a gap year, up from 3% in a typical year, the education publication Hechinger Report notes. Even though gap year options might not be as numerous as previous year, there are still plenty of choices, says Ethan Knight, executive director of the Gap Year Association.

 The key, he says, is to design a gap year that is intentional, educational and purpose-driven — and not to spend the year playing video games.

“The rest of the world is on a gap year right now,” Knight says. “We don’t know what the jobs are on the other side of this thing. Postponing might be one of the smartest things if it can clarify what they want from life.”

Safety and clarity of purpose will result in far more benefit than enrolling in a virtual learning program, especially one that professors are unenthusiastic about delivering and one that is grossly overpriced.

So what can a “gap year” student do? In an ideal world where the POTUS and Congress cared about the well being of communities and the future of our nation a proposal for funding a national community service program would be sitting on the POTUS’ desk awaiting signature. If such an idea were advanced in January it could go into effect in 2021-22… and it looks like it will be needed even more then!

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