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Gap-Year Opportunities

Upon graduation, you will find that specialized gap-year opportunities that include funding are competitive. There are myriad opportunities to volunteer, but if you are looking to support yourself financially through a gap year, even minimally, you will need to develop a competitive application. URF deems these years “bridge years” or “years of intention” and encourages you, whatever your discipline, to consider what you might gain and what you might contribute if you venture out. If you intend to use these gap years to help further your own development personally and professionally, then it makes sense to pursue those opportunities that are still in keeping with your previous studies, interests, and experiences, such as undergraduate research, service and leadership experience, foreign language training, internships, international study, and so forth. The list of gap-year opportunities in the drop-down below is by no means comprehensive, but it’s a great place to start!

TIP: One of the most important things you must do during your gap year(s) is to maintain relationships with your faculty, advisors, and others who have mentored you. Even if they have already written some kind of letter of recommendation for you, a lot can happen in 1-2 years. And, anyway, the whole point of building those relationships has less to do with any kind of letter and everything to do with how they have and will continue to help you as you plan your future. So, make a point of staying in touch without any strings attached. Send an email or a postcard, visit when back on campus, set a coffee date, read what they are currently working on in their own research, and just do the good, important work of staying in touch!

URF is available to support you even after you graduate. We are finding more and more recent graduates connecting with us to pursue fellowships, such as the Fulbright, and other types of post-graduate and gap-year experiences, which we welcome! Please visit our “First Steps” page to request an appointment with a member of our staff.