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Should I take a gap year?!?!

Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
edited June 27 in Gap Year
I'm so confused on what to do currently. Northwestern just released their plans of what they're doing in the fall, and I honestly was not happy.

Quick Summary
-No Roomates
-Wildcat Welcome had be shrunk down greatly
-Most lessons including acting classes and labs will probably be online
-there's no guarantee of enough housing with singles or that you'll get you money back if the quarter is canceled
-it is very likely that we'll have a coronavirus outbreak on campus
-AND YOU STILL PAY THE SAME PRICE for all of this

Okay now you have all the info, so let me tell you what I would do during my gap year instead.
- Probably work as a paid intern at my current internship
-Build my Youtube platform
-Work on being more active for education, blm, native Americans
-mentor students incoming seniors applying to college
-Maybe create an app or write a book if I have time
-Get my driver's license
-Take classes at my local community college so I could definitely double major when I eventually went to Northwestern
-Apply to scholarships I couldn't this year

Honestly I'm leaning toward the gap year, but I was also really set on attending school this fall and don't want to miss out. I'm scared that I might not be ready when I eventually go. My mom told me a year won't mean anything in the long run, but 2025 seems so far from now and I feel with all my plans I feel like it would set me back.

Please help me, especially if you're someone who did a gap year. I have until July 1st to make up my mind!
edited June 27
28 replies
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Replies to: Should I take a gap year?!?!

  • airway1airway1 929 replies13 threads Member
    What happens if this stays for a 2nd year? So much unknown if you can afford it you should enroll. I am hating it for all my kids but will not delay their education with no vaccine in place
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  • 1NJParent1NJParent 2447 replies37 threads Senior Member
    Does Northwestern guarantee enrollment for the following year for students taking a gap year? Some schools (including Princeton) don't under the current circumstances.
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 9879 replies380 threads Senior Member
    Some colleges will classify you as a transfer if you take classes at any other college before you enroll. Check with Northwestern to see if you'll still be eligible for grants if you take classes at a community college. Can your parents afford the college if you don't get any aid?
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  • Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
    @doschicos I assumed I could take a class or two, but not officially enroll in my community college. Or is that not allowed either?
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  • Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
    @airway1 If it stay for second year, I already agreed with my mom that I would go. Also the fact that there's no vaccine is why I'm worried. There's likely going to be an outbreak on campus, and I have asthma. My state isn't as bad and I wouldn't be going out all the time.
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  • Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
    @1NJParent I think they do, but I have to go check to make sure.
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  • Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
    edited June 27
    @austinmshauri We have a little aid, but the current economy was making it harder for them to pay currently so they were taking out a loan. I was hoping that this could be avoided if I wait, since I'll work and apply to more scholarships.
    edited June 27
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  • Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
    General Addition: This is sort of random, but I was also wondering if it's was possible for to come after winter break. I feel like one the vaccine starts coming things might start getting better so... Has anyone ever seen that be allowed or know anything about that?
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  • suzyQ7suzyQ7 4890 replies66 threads Senior Member
    How much of a loan did your parents take for each year of northwestern?

    Did you check with the college is you are guaranteed a spot back of you take a gap year?
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  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 10203 replies119 threads Senior Member
    The IL numbers are actually quite good. Take a look at the Illinois Department of Public Health’s website. The Evanston numbers are also looking very good. Our governor will put restrictions back quickly if things start to shift. Everyone is mask wearing indoors.

    NU has Fall athletes back. There is still lots of socializing happening despite smaller group sizes. Students look happy to be back.

    Don’t take any classes. You need to report them all, even from a community college. And double check that NU is guaranteeing you can return to school when you want. Most schools are not making that claim.

    Do you have an option to enroll in NU classes fully online from home? That would at least save room and board.


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  • Groundwork2022Groundwork2022 3447 replies78 threads Senior Member
    I would not make any decisions until you find out if a deferral is even possible. Talk to admissions directly. Don't trust others on the internet as policies may change and you can't assume your financial aid will still be available. If you can't defer, you will have to reapply and compete all over again with this year's high school seniors and everyone else who took a gap year. You should not plan on taking any classes at community college without clearing it with Northwestern first.

    A gap year might be the right decision, but it is important to understand all the consequences and ramifications.
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 9879 replies380 threads Senior Member
    We have a little aid, but the current economy was making it harder for them to pay currently so they were taking out a loan. I was hoping that this could be avoided if I wait, since I'll work and apply to more scholarships.

    The best aid comes from colleges. If your net cost requires private loans and you're hoping for outside scholarships (which are usually only a few hundred dollars), the school is probably too expensive. What's the net cost and how much of it can your parents pay without borrowing?
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  • Mwfan1921Mwfan1921 5375 replies91 threads Senior Member
    Agree with the above....is NU having a town hall meeting? I do doubt you will be able to enroll in college classes and transfer credit, but more importantly, you have to know whether you can come back when you want to, be it winter quarter, or one year from now.

    You should also speak with your doctor about going to college with asthma, and your risk level should you get covid-19.

    I know these are difficult decisions.....all options are sub-optimal, and all have uncertainties.

    Good luck.
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  • KnowsstuffKnowsstuff 7384 replies34 threads Senior Member
    Agree with all the above. But also like you have some direction if things change and you do gap.

    Now... If your accepted into their acting program (you said acting lessons), you need to talk with them fast how they will approach teaching. If you got into their acting program then you have some talent. It's a great program. You don't want to squander that if you can afford it.

    Emails work on Saturday.

    As an aside I know some upperclassmen there and their going back. They said they will just deal with what comes their way.
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  • Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
    @suzyQ7 About 50,000 dollars. I am guaranteed a spot, but someone told me that could change so I have to check.
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  • Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
    @momofsenior1 That's really good to hear! It makes me feel better about possibly going.

    You can take classes online from home, but as I said before my parents would have to take a loan to pay for that( which seems kind of ridiculous to me). Also my labs and theatre/film classes would be online.
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  • Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
    @Groundwork2022 From what I heard it sounds like I shouldn't take any classes from community college, but there were still other things I wanted to do. A deferral is possible, but they have to approve it( which might happen since they said they might not have enough dorms for single rooms).
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  • suzyQ7suzyQ7 4890 replies66 threads Senior Member
    Doodoo27 wrote: »
    @suzyQ7 About 50,000 dollars. I am guaranteed a spot, but someone told me that could change so I have to check.

    50,000 per year??
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  • Doodoo27Doodoo27 66 replies3 threads Junior Member
    @austinmshauri My parent's could pay before without borrowing, but after covid my parent's income decreased significantly. Northwestern was making me wait until later on the year (when we had more proof) before they reconsider their aid option.
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