Over the past 4 years, UnCollege has helped over 150 students make the most of their gap year experience. From adventurous entrepreneurs to creative artists, the fellows in our program have pushed themselves to take huge strides towards their goals and develop on both a personal and professional level.We are proud of our fellows and we are proud of the program that we have improved tirelessly cohort after cohort after cohort.
When we first started out, our fellows had little interest in returning to college. UnCollege was more of a career explorer that helped fellows develop the soft skills needed to jump into the job market. We helped them land jobs at startups and start their own businesses. But that’s changed as our program has matured and gap years have gained popularity. The majority of participants in our recent cohorts have gone back to school to chase the dreams that they built or envisioned during their gap year.
In other words, UnCollege isn’t a career launcher, it’s a life launcher program no matter what path our fellows choose to take. Our program is as flexible and versatile as it has ever been because it needs to be. We pride ourselves on accommodating the unique, curious, and driven group of students that enter our doors every year. Our goal is to help more students and to give students as many options as possible to participate in a self-directed experience like ours.
That is why we are excited to announce Gap Semester – a fifteen week program that will feature an abbreviated version of UnCollege’s Voyage and Launch phases. Our inaugural Gap Semester cohort (GS1) will begin February 25th, 2018. (To get updates on when the application will open, click here).
Gap Semester will offer five weeks of service learning abroad in the same countries that our Gap Year program operates – India, Tanzania, Indonesia, Peru, and Mexico. During the five weeks abroad, fellows will participate in the same volunteer placements as our Gap Year program, follow a similar self-directed curriculum, and have plenty of free time to explore the area and experience the culture.
The phase with the least amount of structural changes is Launch – the ten weeks in San Francisco where fellows attend workshops, develop skills, and live and work amongst their peers. The vast majority of our alumni consider Launch to be most impactful and “life-changing” 10 weeks of their lives.
The biggest change is the the absence of the internship phase. Without the extra time commitment, fellows will now have the option to attend college in the fall and also give them more flexibility for future plans in general.
There are more details to come, but this program will help us accomplish our goal of helping more students gain the skills, confidence, and clarity needed to achieve whatever they set their minds to moving forward.