Advice for parents about the career options for their children

Gap Year Options

Broadly speaking, the available options are:

1. Getting a job

A job at this point is unlikely to be a highly paid option as students will have limited qualifications and all school leavers will be competing for unskilled employment at this time. However, this could be a short term option to fund further plans.

2. Volunteering/work experience

Volunteers can find themselves digging a well in a third world country, teaching children to speak English, helping in a care home or building a clinic. There is such a variety of options available and it is an ideal way for your son or daughter to experience other cultures, poverty levels and age differences. Universities and employers especially love this for the altruism and because it shows dedication and willingness to work hard. English speaking skills are highly valued in other countries, giving your child a clear advantage if this is their preferred option. These jobs may only pay board but financial gain is not the objective.

3. Charity

Your child could choose to spend part or all of their gap year raising money for charity by training for and carrying out a major fund raising activity, such as a sponsored bike ride the length of the British Isles, or walking the Great Wall of China, giving them both a great experience for a worthy cause and really enhancing their CV for future jobs.

4. Travelling

This could be combined with working, or if your child has the funding, they could just travel to their chosen countries, meeting like minded people before deciding where to move onto next. There is a vast community of travellers across the world and this is a great way for them to really discover a country off the beaten tourism track, as well as learning independence ahead of taking up their place at university.