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An Affordable Gap Year, Part I

Question Mark: Courtesy of Google Images

Julia Levine of EnRoute Consulting discusses affordable, varied and very exciting Gap Year Options. If you need assistance planning a gap year, or just have general questions on affordable options, contact Julia directly at EnRoute Consulting

An Affordable Gap Year, Part I
Some elements of a gap year are essential: exploration of a personal interest, traveling domestically or abroad, pushing your comfort zone and opening yourself up to new experiences. There is one thing that a gap year doesn’t have to be: expensive.

Gap Year Counselor Standing by to Assist You!

Photo: Courtesy Julia Levine, Enroute Gap Year Consulting

Julia Levine is an experienced Gap Year Adviser, based in Vermont, whose passion is to help students and parents across the country plan effective gap year experiences. In the coming months, Julia will be contributing valuable Gap Year planning advice to our readers. Read her first post below, then visit her at EnRoute Consulting to have her answer your questions and help you plan your gap year!

Mapping the Gap:
How a Gap Year Adviser Can Help You Make the Most of Your Gap Year

By Julia Levine, Director, EnRoute Consulting

Gap Year Opportunity in the Bahamas - Cape Eleuthera Institute PADI Certification

Photo: Courtesy of Cape Eleuthera Institute

The Cape Eleuthera Institute is a facility that promotes a connection between people and the environment, and offers an 8 week intensive gap year program focusing on leadership, ecology, research and sustainable development. Read more below or visit Cape Eleuthera Institute

During your Gap Year on Eleuthera you will:

- Explore the island of Eleuthera, a beautiful tropical environment
- Achieve Open Water, Advanced and Rescue SCUBA certification
- Participate in hands-on scientific research
- Experience adventure in sea kayaking and camping expeditions
- Develop professional skills in/out of a traditional office
- Learn sustainable farming and animal husbandry skills

Gap Year Counseling Webinar


Want to learn more about planning a gap year? Enroute Gap Year Consulting is hosting on-line webinars this week for parents and students. See details below:

For Parents:
A Guide to the Gap: What Parents Need to Know About Gap Years

Wednesday, May 4th 8pm EST
This webinar will address the common questions and concerns parents have about allowing their child to take a gap year. College deferment, budgeting and types of gap-year programs will also be discussed.
Email with "Parent" in the subject line to sign up.

For Students:
Time-Out: Is a Gap Year Right for Me?
Wednesday, May 11th 8pm EST

Peterson's Article Outlines Alternative Gap Year Options

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Peterson's College Search (A Comprehensive Guide to College Education in the U.S.) does a great job of succinctly outlining most popular alternatives for transitioning to college including a gap year. Read the article, Should You Take a Gap Year Before College and Explore Alternatives?

Article Quote:

"Many students (and their parents) worry about getting off the college-bound train, but we have found that most students interested in higher education will go to college, and that a gap year of some kind often increases their motivation for college and their odds of success once they enroll."

Admissions Directors and College Planners Support Gap Year

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Please read 'Gap Year', A Fulfilling Time for High School Graduates published in the Denver Post early this month by Kevin Simpson. Good news, Planet Gap Year is listed as a planning resource in the article! More good news.. 2 admissions directors as well as a college planning consultant based in Denver were interviewed in this article, and explain why they support students taking a gap year between high school and starting college.

Data & Studies Support Positive Outcomes of Taking a Gap Year

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Delaying College to Fill in the Gaps , by Sue Shellenbarger, was published in the Wall Street Journal in late December 2010, and references new statistics and educational studies that show the gap year option continues to be favored by U.S. colleges and universities.

Gap Year Volunteering Documentary

An exciting new documentary discussing the impact of 'Gap Year' volunteers in Ghana has been released online by independent production company Ya Basta Films. Using a range of contributions from academics, local workers and volunteers, the impact of this kind of volunteering is assessed in order to try and answer the questions, what is the impact? and who really benefits?

If you have ever volunteered in a developing country, or are considering doing so for a gap year, I recommend watching this film in its entirety.

Please Mind The Gap from Ya Basta Films on Vimeo.

College Success Guide Missing The Gap Year Option

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I recently reviewed an article on the internet entitled 'A Student's Guide to College'

Like many college guides the article points out the pitfalls that prevent so many from succeeding, but don't get to the root cause, nor do they offer real solutions. For example, One tip offered in the article is "Advance Preparation for Independent Management". Here's what it says:

"I can tell you that the best students come already prepared to manage themselves like adults. They have already established good study habits, keep to a bedtime, participate in a sport, go to class and make efforts to earn friends most like them, with similar interests and good habits as well."

Updated Gap Year Book Recommendations


We recommend the following books as good resources for planning your gap year:

You can also scroll down the page to click on links to order the books at

  1. The Complete Guide to the Gap Year. The Best Things to Do Between High School and College by Kristin M. White.
  2. Your Gap Year: Everything You Need to Know to Make Your Year Out the Adventure of a Lifetime by Susan Griffith.
  3. Lonely Planet The Gap Year Book by Joe Bindloss
  4. The Gap Year Advantage: Helping Your Child Benefit from Time Off Before or During College by Karl Haiger and Rae Nelson.
  5. Taking Time Off, 2nd Edition (College Admissions Guides) by Colin Hall.
  6. Before You Go: The Ultimate Guide to Planning your Gap Year by Tom Griffiths.