9: Gap year

A Thousand Things to Talk About
A Thousand Things to Talk About
9: Gap year

Today, we’re talking about taking some time off. Specifically…

Is the European tradition of a “gap year” between high school and college something we should encourage more of in the U.S.?

Show notes & links:
Gap year on Wikipedia

Full episode text

Since the late 70’s or early 80’s, the idea of a “year out” or “gap year” has been fairly well ingrained in many places – though the practice does still remain quite controversial in others, for a number of reasons.  However, one thing is for certain – taking time off between high school and college is much less common in the United States. But should it be? I’ll let two of the comments that have already popped up on Facebook start the discussion:

  • “I told myself I was going to take a year off after high school and never went back to college until I was 32. It was a lot harder to go back then than if I had gone after high school. I don’t think it’s a good idea.”
  • “I went to college right away even though I knew I wasn’t prepared for it, and didn’t have a clear idea of anything I wanted to do. Wasted years and thousands of dollars dicking around with school. I wish now I had begged harder for my parents to be ok with me not going right away, and they do too!”