Using that Gap Year Wisely

There’s no doubt that taking a gap year is a brilliant idea. Doing so allows you to get out of the classroom and breathe and think for yourself. You can volunteer, work, study abroad, travel, or do anything else constructive during your gap year.

Spending that gap year abroad


Why Work?

Firstly – money! Getting a paid position means you don’t need to worry about your finances, and can often lead to more exciting opportunities that you may have been unaware of before. Working abroad is a fantastic addition to any resume: whether you’re working on a cattle farm in rural Australia, helping children in a developing country or doing an internship in China will show your work ethic, as well as initiative to find work wherever you are!

Working Abroad

This is fine if you have savings to fund your trip, especially to purchase that sometimes costly airline ticket. You’ll also need some money to support yourself the first two or three months while you get set up. Voluntary positions abroad are the best way to fully immerse yourself in a country’s culture. Some organizations provide free housing for volunteers, but you’re on your own for other expenses. But be warned: You may fall in love with your host country and not want to come back!

Working At Home

You don’t need to go abroad to make a difference! Staying at home presents just as many opportunities as going away does – just maybe with slightly worse weather! Most countries have projects set up to get students involved with the communities around them, offering placements of varying lengths. These placements range from working with the elderly or under-privileged children to helping out with environmental causes, or animals.

Different Kinds Of Work

Internships

If you’re staying at home, why not use this time to explore any career paths that interest you? Apply for internships and work experience at a range of places – most companies offer them for anywhere between several weeks to a year.

At Getin2China, we offer internships in Beijing and internships in Shanghai in a wide variety of fields, from engineering to business to the arts. An intern in China will walk away with a rich cultural experience and real-world work experience that will stick out on a resume.

Voluntary work

Volunteering, whether you’re at home or abroad, is the best way to give something back to the community. Choose the sector you love the most and research the different organizations that will help get you involved. Many charities will help you plan a trip, if you’re committed to helping out with their projects. It’s a great way to meet new people, and know you’re making a difference, rather than just visiting tourist hotspots and drinking on the beach!

Manual labour

If you’re not keen on sitting in an office, and want to do something more active, there are plenty of farms around the world that gladly welcome help from travelers. From strawberry picking in the UK, helping to pick and squash grapes in French vineyards, to herding cattle in the Australian outback, there’s a huge variety of things to get involved with. Work on your tan while getting a healthy dose of exercise, and on top, you usually get paid, or offered bed and board, meaning that part of your adventure is entirely free.

Working Requirements

Most countries that you’ll visit will require you to get a visa, so check what limitations are placed on your ability to work while you’re organizing your trip. Most organizations that are international in scope, will help you obtain a visa. At GI2C, we help you organize your work visa for China and send you any necessary documents on our end.
Rate this blog entry:
Intern Update: Julia Nikolaychuk
Internship Testimonial: Selman Haxhiu

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