Meet the Fellows: Neroli and Exploring Gap Year Opportunities

May 23, 2018
Year On TeamFellow Voices

#GapYearDecisionDay is May 25th! As students from around the world prepare to share their gap year plans, we wanted to highlight some of the reasons our current fellows decided to take a gap year.

Today, we spoke with Neroli, a fellow from Cohort 12, to talk about the advice she has for prospective gappers and what she focused on during her gap year.

Year On: What advice do you have for students who are thinking about taking a gap year?

Neroli: I highly recommend taking a gap year. I was initially scared and didn’t really know what to expect. I was worried what people would think when so many friends and other people were all going straight to college. Taking this gap year has been the best year of my life! I have gone places and done things I’d never even dreamed about. I grew in so many different ways and have made lifelong friends and connections. I found a new confidence in myself and in the 20 weeks I began to feel that the many dreams I fantasized about could, in fact, become my life. My advice to everyone is to take the leap and grab hold of this opportunity. You’ll learn and do more than you ever thought was possible.

Year On: Why did you decide to take a gap year?

Neroli: I decided to take a gap year because I wasn’t sure what to study in college or if it was the best fit for me after graduation. I am extremely grateful that I was able to take this opportunity to travel and explore life in a totally different framework to anything I had experienced before. Traveling to Bali, volunteering and immersing myself in village life was an incredibly fun and enriching process. I honed in on my different passions and was able to study them and create multiple projects during Launch. I now am moving forward towards many of the goals I set. I am almost done with my gap year and am so many steps closer to my dreams that seemed so impossible just a year ago.

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Year On: What are you working on now during the Launch phase? 

Neroli: I’m currently still practicing my self-directed learning. I’m taking multiple photography courses online. While juggling a couple jobs to support my upcoming travels and passions. My current focus is portraiture, especially children. I plan to work on my photography, travel blog while I travel to four different states. I then plan to travel out of the U.S. in a couple months to a few different countries followed by some work opportunities in fashion in Mexico. I am still working on developing my photographic portfolio while designing.

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