Members of the Student Ventures team are experienced in Gap Years and Voluntary Leaves of Absences form Universities. We are experienced and supportive of Gap Years, and have personally experienced their benefits of them too.
Max from the StudVent team took a gap year to play junior hockey at the “A” level after taking classes and participating in a “13th” or postgraduate “PG” program at a boarding school. He started university when he was 20 years old with a clearer idea on what he wanted to study, and a more serious and disciplined approach. Max has gone on to achieve and excellent GPA and was accepted as a transfer applicant into an Ivy League institution in the second semester of his freshman year.
Michael from the StudVent team took a gap year (voluntary leave of absence) during university. He interned as a pastry chef in a Five Star French restaurant. Working fulltime for a year and learning as a pastry apprentice, he learned much about food preparation including baking and the art of French cooking. In addition, he gained valuable experience and insight into restaurant operations, and working with people from different socioeconomic backgrounds. Michael credits his gap year experience and increased maturity level with a much better academic performance his last two years of university. He took on a series of Teaching Assistant (TA) jobs that he would have never imagined doing before his gap experience. Michael also took a gap year after university, spending an immersive year in Europe traveling and working in different locations and furthering his foreign language skills before embarking on his career. This experience and alternative path usually not taken by his peers was “sellable” and helped him land an exceptionally good “first job’ as a turnaround hotel general manager at the age of 24. This experience planted the seeds for his first internet startup company at the age of 26, and on to MBA at the age of 29, and a lifelong relationship with Europe, where he later returned to pursue his MSc/PhD degree in his 30’s.