Gap Year & Summer Programs

Deciding whether to attend college directly after high school is a choice that many students and their parents make without considering any alternatives. To help each student make an informed choice, Tish has
compiled these resources.

Gap Year & Summer Programs-1

American Gap Association is a new accreditation board that screens the programs of participating organizations.

Interim Programs, a gap year resource bureau –

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AFS offers language study, homestay, and community service projects in many parts of the world during summer, as well as gap year and high school year programs.

Carpe Diem, Seize the Day! offers semester-length programs that combine some language study, plus homestay, with community service projects and travel. Affiliated with Portland (OR) State U.

CIEE, Council on International Educational Exchange has been sending university students and educators abroad since just after World War II, and more recently this well-established NGO has developed high school and gap year abroad programs that feature home stay and enrollment in selected high schools. CIEE does not believe a summer is sufficient to acquire proficiency in a language, so its shorter offerings are more limited.

Oxford University, England Oxford University, England

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The Rotary Youth Exchange program has been functioning for 75 years in 80 countries, completely through the club’s network of volunteers. Applicants need a local club to sponsor them, and the student pays for airfare, health insurance, and visas, but the Rotary Club supplies room and board and $50-100 a month in spending money.

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The Corporation for National and Community Service now administers service opportunities formerly identified as AmeriCorps, Civilian Community Corps.

City Year –

The Student Conservation Association - is another branch of AmeriCorps program, with similar benefits (living allowance and earnings accumulated for college), and a focus on nature and the environment.

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World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms - offers immersion in agriculture, an experience of how food is produced that will forever alter trips to the supermarket.

Teens can volunteer through Cross Cultural Solutions - in various parts of the world and projects in need of staffing.

Dynamy Internship Residential internship program In Worcester, Mass.

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“Be the change you wish to see” in 126 countries. “Intense work and study experiences abroad are complemened with contemplative learning retreats at our Northern California campus that serve to teach students how to wholeheartedly participate in the world and live passionately without leaving any parts of themselves out – mind, body, spirit, soul, emotion.”

Rustic Pathways (“Creating positive energy” is its motto) places a strong focus on student travel, adding community service projects (turtle conservation in Costa Rica) and language tutoring to a fun mix.

Thinking Beyond TBB takes 16 high school grads around the world in 8 months to study “global development issues from social, political, and economical perspectives.”
These relatively low-fee foreign experiences (France, Spain, Germany, Mexico) include home stays (great for learning language):

Spanish language, internships, travel in Barcelona, Spain

CollegeConsult Santa Barbara