Is a Gap Year Right for You?

That time of year is upon us where we will all return home for holiday breaks and be bombarded with questions about what our future looks like after Hope College. For some, maybe the panic starts to set in and you feel like you have zero answers. For others, maybe you have known for a while now what you are doing after graduation.

We want you to feel prepared and ready to take on the next adventure, no matter what that looks like. There are multiple paths that you can choose from and The Boerigter Center for Calling and Career wants to help you in the process to discern, prepare, and pursue. The Gap Year Fair is the perfect place to explore what opportunities and careers are available to you once you graduate from Hope. Several different nonprofit organizations and programs such as Teach For America and Peace Corps will be represented at this event, which will be held on Tuesday, October 30th from 11:00AM to 1:30PM in Maas Auditorium.

Hope College alumni Sarah Jane Carpenter writes about her personal experience with the Gap Year Fair:

“I always feel a little surprised when people ask me, “How was your gap year?!” or even, “How was your trip?!” I always interpreted the term, “Gap Year” as a period of time somebody takes when they have no post-college plans. For me personally, I was in the midst of applying to various graduate schools to receive my education degree for teaching 7th-12th grade English Language Arts. I worked as the 7th-10th grade English Language Arts instructor for a phenomenal school called Abundant Life Christian School in Gracias, Honduras. It’s part of a nation-wide school system, but my particular location was in sweet little Gracias. I view that year as a major stepping stone in my life. It was tremendously helpful and essential to my personal, professional, and spiritual growth. I often say that I think I learned as much during that one year in Honduras as I did throughout four years of college! And don’t get my wrong, the four years I spent at Hope College changed my life! So did one year in Honduras, and it changed me just as much, but in different ways that I never would have expected. After teaching my subject to my targeted grade levels for a year, I feel so prepared to now get my education degree.”

So what exactly is a gap year? Typically, a gap year consists of a one to two year-long opportunity in which students who recently graduated take some time to explore different career options and vocations by getting involved with some type of non-profit organization or program. Sometimes, participating in a gap year program can lead to potential employment opportunities within that organization. However, even if it doesn’t, students usually benefit from these experiences as they learn more about themselves and what types of careers they want to explore and pursue.

If you would like more information about the employers attending the event and the event itself please visit Handshake. If you would also like more information on what questions to ask at a Career Fair or how to prep for a career fair, please visit our website or stop in to ask questions. All are welcome and no registration is required.

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