Gap Year Options

A Gap Year is a period of time, usually after graduation, when students take time to pursue a short term opportunity before pursuing graduate school or starting a longer-term job. Gap Years can help students explore career options, gain additional experience, give back to the community, and see the world.

Gap Year Options

There are many different possibilities for a Gap Year including work and internship experiences, volunteering, and traveling. A sample list of Gap Year opportunities can be found here. This list is a starting point, so explore other opportunities as well.

Explore Opportunities

You may consider meeting with an advisor to discuss your own Gap Year plan. A few great websites with many Gap Year opportunities are idealist.org and pathwaystoscience.org. Gap year opportunities are also often featured through Handshake.

Selecting a Gap Year Program

When searching for Gap Year options, there are a few questions you can ask to choose the appropriate opportunity for you:

  1. What do I hope to gain from taking a Gap Year?
  2. What possible options are available to me?
  3. What are my career interests?
  4. What skills do I want to gain?
  5. What is the time commitment?
  6. What is my financial situation?

AmeriCorps

AmeriCorps brings people together to serve communities. Service members work directly with organizations and nonprofits to tackle our nation’s most pressing challenges. Benefits of service include: a modest living allowance, full-time members are eligible for health insurance, plus funding of $6K+ for existing student loans and/or going back to college. You can choose an opportunity that aligns with your top passion(s), as there are thousands offered across the states in key areas including Education, Healthy Futures, Environmental Stewardship, Disaster Response, Economic Opportunity, Veterans & Military Families.

University of Miami's AmeriCorps Recruiter is the liaison for a variety of programs serving as a resource for UM students and alumni, as well as the South Florida community, for those interested in learning about & applying for local/national opportunities. If you would like to find out further details about Florida-based service programs that are currently recruiting, please visit our Handshake employer profile or Butler Center agency profile. You can find helpful updates on our Facebook page too. For any other questions, you’re welcome to e-mail americorps@miami.edu.

Peace Corps

If you are interested in actively contributing towards the development goals of communities around the world, learning another language, experiencing a unique way of travel and living in another part of the world, the Peace Corps might be a perfect way to spend your gap year(s). Work side by side with locals in a number of programs like community economic development, youth development, education, environment, health or agriculture.

Once you have completed your service there are a number of advantages that Returned Peace Corps Volunteers can take advantage of like a readjustment allowance, non-competitive eligibility for government jobs and a lifetime ability to join the Coverdell fellowship to continue your education in one of over 100 universities across the United States.

If the Peace Corps sounds like a great way to spend your gap year period please do not hesitate to learn more by visiting the website at www.peacecorps.gov!