The "gap year", a break between high school and college in which a student travels or simply takes a break from academics, is believed by some to be gaining popularity in the United States.
According to MSNBC, the gap year is a tradition in some European countries and Australia, but many American kids shy away from the practice due to the emphasis on the importance of college or due to the perception of such an endeavor being expensive. Holly Bull, the president of a gap year consulting firm, says that parents fear their children won't go on to college if they are allowed to take a gap year.
Despite these concerns and attitudes, some believe the gap year is beneficial for students and is currently rising in popularity.
"The Gap-Year Advantage: Helping Your Child Benefit from Time Off Before or During College," a recent research paper on the subject, finds that nine out of 10 students return to college within a year after their "gap," and that 60 percent reported that their gap year helped them change or confirm their choice of career or field of study, according to the news source.
The presence of gap year travel companies at college and career fairs is also rising, and some universities are reportedly working gap-year-like programs into the curriculum.
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