ideas for year off after high school

<p>An acquaintance of mine just called for advice. Her son, a junior in high school, is saying that he does not want to go to college, and she and her husband are now inclined to support him in finding out about other options. The son recently went to New Orleans with the local Y, to do some carpentry work, and he loved it. He also works with kids at the Y. We live in a small town, and the son seems to want to travel or at least work somewhere far away.</p>

<p>I hesitate to use the term "gap year," partly because it is uncertain if this kid will go to college the following year, and also because these folks don't have a whole lot of money, though they would help subsidize an experience for their son if within a certain financial range, and the son works faithfully during the school year and summers.</p>

<p>So far, I have sent her links on WOOF, the gapyear site, National Outdoor Leadership School (epxensive), North Bennett St. School/carpentry in Boston, and a few other things.</p>

<p>Would love to send her a list of programs or opportunities that they could look into.</p>

<p>Thank you!</p>

<p>Sounds like CityYear or some sort of Americorps thing would be great. You do useful stuff, much of it hands-on, and actually get paid a little bit.</p>

<p>Learning languages is a possibility. Not all au pairs have to be female.</p>

<p>Do Americorp jobs require a degree? Some do, I know. City Year is a good idea. This student probably does not want to work on learning languages (I am guessing) but the au pair idea is also interesting. Thanks to you both.</p>

<p>I am doing a search on this site for "gap year" with a lot of good results.</p>

<p>compmom, I'm interested to hear what you learn about gap programs because my junior S is leaning strongly that direction. We've looked at NOLS, which at first seemed great, but my son has already done a ton of backpacking, hiking and outdoor stuff on the way to earning his Eagle Scout, so he's now thinking he wants to do something abroad, but not necessarily all outdoors.</p>

<p>Tell her to read "The Gap Year Advantage" by Haigler and Nelson. Lots of organizations mentioned in the reference section. And don't forget SCA (Student Conservation Association) which provides service to the national parks AND is free of charge (they will provide a stipend when he finishes his term of service with them).</p>

<p>Rotary Student Exchange Program for Overseas experience</p>

<p>Rotary.org:</a> Rotary Youth Exchange</p>

<p>No cost other than airplane ticket.</p>

<p>I did this many moons ago and it was great.</p>

<p>my daughter worked two jobs for 4 months to subsidize a 5mo "volunteer vacation"
That was after she decided against this program
AmeriCorps.gov</a> > AmeriCorps NCCC</p>

<p>M's mom, thanks for the suggestion. That book arrived yesterday and my 17-year-old Junior is enjoying reading it. He is very interested in programs that land him in Africa with communities that are struggling with issues associated with poverty. So many programs are available both in the US and abroad. Makes me want to go back 30 years and do a few things differently, but I'm glad my son has his mind open.</p>

<p>Do you have JobCorp in your area? for low income individuals between ages 16-23, the residential program for job development. Technical skills are stressed as well as resume prep, etc.</p>

<p>How about an apprenticeship through the United Brotherhood of Carpenters? Such an apprenticeship could take four years, but if he doesn't want to go to college, he should learn a useful skill and he should learn to support himself.</p>