March 4, 2021

Make Your Own Path On A Gap Year

Tags: 2021, Israel, Navigating Parenthood

Marnie Nadolne is an Atlanta parent of three teens and the Israel Programs Admissions Director, Atlanta, for Alexander Muss High School in Israel.

You’re on a path. If you’re like most, that path includes going to school, building your resume, working to get good grades, getting into a good college, picking a major, and hopefully landing a rewarding and lucrative job. It’s a proven and certainly expected path, but… it’s not always the right one for everyone.

Nowadays, many students choose to take time “off” before heading to college. A gap year after high school enables you to focus on your education outside the classroom, experience a different culture, learn a new language, and become a global citizen. You will meet a network of like-minded people who will become lifelong friends. And you will develop skills in areas of interest to you and maybe discover interests you didn’t even know you had.

Studies show that students who take a gap year are more successful in college. In fact, admissions directors report that they prefer students who have taken or plan to take a gap year, as these students tend to be more mature and focused, better leaders, and adept at managing their time and money, travel and roommates before they ever step foot on campus. And after college, your gap experience will continue to be an advantage as employers will appreciate the courage, service-mindedness, global awareness, and teamwork that you acquired through your extended overseas experience.

For Jewish students, one of the most exciting options is a year in Israel. In Israel, you can explore your heritage and connect with locals while you volunteer, intern, study, travel, and deepen your Jewish identity. You will live in the “Start Up Nation,” learning about the early pioneers and about advancements that continue to improve the world. And you will inevitably forge your own path that will be more meaningful and uniquely enriching.

Jewish National Fund’s Gap Year, Frontier Israel, is one such program. With the benefit of JNF’s vast resources, Frontier Israel participants spend extended time living, volunteering, and learning in the north, the center, and the south of Israel. Each Frontier has a different feel, different culture, and different experiences, and each is amazing in its own way! Live like an Israeli, explore the country, help others, and make your own path on Frontier Israel. For more information, please contact me at mnadolne@jnf.org. Limited spots are still available for the 2021-2022 Full year and Fall semester programs.

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