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The Benefits (and Risks) of a GAP Year In Tough Economic Times

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The New York Times carried an article yesterday, entitled
Delaying College for a Year Could Have Benefits, which lays out a few creative reasons for putting off college for a year.
The financial arguments boil down to this:
1.  President Obama’s proposed changes to federal student aid may put a few hundred dollars more per year in a student’s coffers (of course, the plan will have to get through Congress first…but perhaps, “yes, it can”).
2.  The economy could get a bit better, meaning that money Mom and Dad have set aside might be worth a bit more tomorrow than it is today (of course, it could also be worth less…but who wants to think that way?).
As the article attests, it is tough to get many students pumped up about a Gap Year, because it just “isn’t the norm.”  However, I like the idea of a Gap Year for many students who really don’t have a solid direction, who maybe don’t love school so much and need a break, or for kids who want to take advantage of their youth while they still have it.
If I had it to do all over again, I’d certainly take a Gap Year.  In fact, I’d like to take a Gap Year now.
What is that quotation about how youth is wasted on the young?  Who said that?
Mark Montgomery
Educational Consultant
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