VOLUNTEER BLOG: GAP YEAR

Don't Go To College Next Year

Before you know it, it’s time to start looking at colleges. The pressure is on--college fair after college fair, thousands of brochures, late-nights up researching the endless choices for majors; all while taking finals and trying to finish off high school. At this point in life, high school graduates are still in the process of figuring out who they are and understanding the world, but they are simultaneously forced into making the biggest decision of their life. What if going directly into college directly after completing high school isn’t the best choice?

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5 Reasons To Volunteer on a Gap Year

Across the US, more students than ever are setting off on a Gap Year before, during, or after college—even President Obama’s daughter, Malia.

This is your chance to take charge of your life: see a new place, get inspired, and set out in a new direction. That’s why CCS has developed a unique Gap Year Abroad program.

So why volunteer abroad during your gap year?

1. You’re not a tourist; you are part of the community.

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"Do What I Love"

by Andrea Wien
Andrea Wien Gap Year

I’d heard the advice. I’d taken the classes. I’d complained to my friends over brunch.

“I know I’m supposed to be following my passion. I know if I could just find ‘it,’ I could make ‘it’ happen. The problem is, I have no idea what ‘it’ is.”

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They gave me ME.

Volunteering in Morcooo for four weeks
by Jessica Couture

When I signed up with Cross Cultural Solutions I was afraid. Not of the program but rather of growing up. Volunteering for four weeks in Morocco was my way of avoiding the “real world”. I was a college senior who had spent the past 3.5 years working towards a degree in a field I suddenly didn’t care about.

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You want to do what? Take a Gap Year?

Gap Year Options from Cross-Cultural SolutionsThis was the beginning of a recent conversation that I had with my soon to graduate 18-year-old son. As someone who grew up with the option of going to college or going to college, “Gap Year” was a foreign concept. Which is really not far from the truth; gap years have been common for some time in Britain and Australia. However, here in the US, their popularity has just increased over the last few years.

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My gap semester in Costa Rica

My experience with Cross-Cultural Solutions began while I was attending Hartwick College in 2008. I had hit a roadblock that I'm sure you may have faced when you were a student, or perhaps you're not quite there yet, but we all tend to hit a moment in life where we just can't clearly see the road ahead. So I rather than a gap year, I decided to take a gap semester in Costa Rica in hopes that it would help me to determine my path forward.

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Volunteering helped me find my career

In the fall of 2009, I was about to return to college after taking several years off to travel. I was at a pretty major crossroads in my life and not entirely sure about what I wanted to study, or what I wanted to do once I earned my degree. So before returning to school in the fall, I decided to go on one last international adventure. And I wanted this one to be something completely different from anything I had ever done before. That's how I made the decision to volunteer with Cross-Cultural Solutions in Bagamoyo, Tanzania for 3 weeks.

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