Cons of taking time off before applying to college?

<p>I want to take some time off before applying to college (as the title states) but some people such as family, school counselors, etc do not agree. I have everything planned out for that time period so I'm not going into this without any idea of what I'm going to do. I have an internship line up, volunteering projects that are close to coming to fruition, and some other activities I would like to accomplish during that time period. I feel like the time I take off will be both mentally and physically nurturing especially after four years of hard work. I would just like some examples of some detrimental consequences that may result due to me taking time off before applying. Thank you for your help!</p>

<p>Bump please...</p>

<p>I guess forgetting the stuff you learned would be big. Also colleges might see that gap and say ***? But if you have a lot going on to fill up all the time you would have spent in school, you may be alright.</p>

<p>Please take your time off and there will be less competition for me! I like it</p>

<p>If you don't feel you are ready for college, taking time off is the right thing to do. There are no negative consequences, IMO. You will be a more mature college student with a better idea of why you're there. </p>

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<p>Consider this option: apply as a senior -- go through all the hoops. Once you determine which school to attend, defer and take that gap year. The advantage is you're close to your info sources (letter of rec writers, counselor write ups) now. Later, you'll be a step or two removed. Also, having a destination clearly set for 2 Septembers from now will make your time off very at ease. Gap years aren't unusual. But it seems people enjoy applying as seniors to get that out of the way -- so as to not stress about it during that year after HS.</p>

<p>Good advice, but make sure your school allows deferrals, since not all do. </p>

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<p>T26E4 just saved me a bunch of typing. I second that advice.</p>

<p>What annasdad says it true: not all colleges and universities allow admitted students to defer their enrollment for a year; you do have to ask. But most of them do allow it, and allow it happily. Still, you need to ask not only whether they allow students to defer, but also whether deferring would have any effect on financial aid (it would, because your financial circumstances could change during your gap year), non-need merit aid (sometimes yes, sometimes no), invitations to honors or other programs (usually not), etc.</p>

<p>My recent HS graduate is about to embark on a gap year abroad. My family investigated several gap year programs. All of them gave basically the same college advice. It was always something along these lines: If you want to apply to college during your gap year, we'll help you as much as we can with recommendations, etc. We often help a few students a year with applications, but high schools do this more than we do, and most students find it much easier to apply to college while they're still in high school, and then defer their enrollment for a year.</p>

<p>I have also thought about doing what you guys suggested (applying and then deferring) but I'm worried that some of my projects or things that I'm doing might extend a bit beyond the one year deadline. I'm not that knowledgeable when it comes to the college process but how does deferring work? When you defer, is that only for a year? Finally, what if during this time off I discover that I might want to study something in an other area, not the one I had planned when I first applied, and the school that I deferred acceptance to, does not offer anything in that area? Would it be possible for me to decline their acceptance even though I had accepted it already? I know I would lose my deposit but other than that, would it be possible if I got in through regular admissions and not ED?</p>

<p>Thank you for all of the help and suggestions, you don't know how helpful this is.</p>

<p>Generally you can hold your spot for one year. You must also agree not to apply to another college in that time (shopper's remorse). If you want more than a year, I think it'd be a case to case scenario but it's probably frowned upon. As for what you study, most colleges admit you into the college, not into a department as most students don't even formally declare a major until Soph or Jr years. (exceptions exist of course).</p>

<p>The Dartmouth website, as an example, has this to say about gap years:
Admitted students who would like to defer their enrollment at Dartmouth for a year can do so by emailing the Admissions Office at <a href="mailto:admissions.application@dartmouth.edu">admissions.application@dartmouth.edu</a> by July 1st in the year that they have been admitted. Admitted students who defer their enrollment may not apply to any other colleges or universities during their gap year. The Admissions Office asks students with deferred enrollment to write to the Admissions Office before January 1st of their gap year to provide an update of experiences, activities, and course work, if applicable. The Admissions Committee reserves the right to review the status of any admitted student and to rescind the offer of admission if a student's academic or personal record does not remain satisfactory in all respects. </p>

<p>I expect this is pretty typical. I think taking more than one year off might be problematic, but if you stayed in touch with the Admissions Office, and especially if you were doing something particularly marvelous, you could probably swing it. In general, having a plan for your gap year is key, both to keeping your spot at your school and to feeling good about the time you've spent. Many kids, IMO, would benefit from the experience and perspective a good gap year could earn them, whether it's spent working or traveling or both.</p>

<p>I just have a question about testing. As of right now, I haven't taken any SAT subject tests because the schools I have in mind do not require the SAT subject tests. If I decide to take some time off before applying and then I decide to apply to a school that requires the SAT subject tests, would I be able to take the SAT subject tests or just the SAT because I have heard that some schools prefer the SAT (I'm not sure if this is true). Thanks</p>

<p>Oh, the College Board will let you take anything you're willing to pay for. They love when they can get you to pay for stuff!</p>

<p>It's really a minority of colleges and universities that want SAT II's--though they are the colleges that take up the majority of people's attention on College Confidential. It tends to be the selective and prestigious colleges that want SAT II's. For example, Rice wants them; Wichita State does not. And many of those fancy-shmancy colleges will take ACT with writing in lieu of SAT and SAT II.</p>