Our Semester Experience is a virtual 15-week program featuring 5 weeks of life design, 10 weeks of skill-building, a volunteer opportunity, and an externship.
January 19 – February 19
February 22 - April 30
All Semester Experience fellows have the option to add housing to their experience for an additional $6,000. All locations are first-come, first-served.
Eclectic museums, trendy shops, and endless happenings are hallmarks of Williamsburg. The G/L and J/M/Z trains are all in close proximity providing easy access to Manhattan and all of Brooklyn, perfect for a long walk, speedy cycle, or quick drive to the Lower East Side.
Set in the Heart of Chicago, the Lower West Side a historic district given new life through some of the best that the city has to offer. Celebrated for its authenticity and vibrant style, this neighborhood is located close to downtown Chicago and the Illinois Medical District.
Larchmont Village has a small-town charm only minutes away from Hollywood, Beverly Hills, and Downtown L.A. This historic neighborhood features a bustling Main Street, home to some of the city's coolest local restaurants and shops, along with gorgeous historic architecture.
All Year On housing will be in pods of 8 - 15 students, depending on location. Each location will have an on-site community coordinator who will support students and help build community.
Private bedroom, furnished with a nightstand, lamp, and a comfy bed.
Living spaces fully furnished with quality pieces
Kitchens outfitted with high-end appliances, dishware, and other essentials.
Laundry, utilities, household essentials, and WiFI are all included
Weekly cleaning of all common spaces to ensure a healthy and friendly environment
Start designing your life based on your values and goals. You’ll be an active learner who first digests the topic of the day and then debrief in small groups led by one of our community coordinators. You will gain a deeper connection with how/what you learn by understanding and designing your own perspective.
Designing your life is helpful for wherever you choose to go after Year On: college, a job, an internship. Learning the skills to be a self-directed and not a passive learner will strengthen your sense of purpose and help you find your “why.”
After your morning of refining your values system and what is important to you, you’ll develop a self of self through helping others. Your afternoons will be a continuous reminder of Year On’s philosophy that strong individuals create stronger communities.
Volunteering for an education group is a great option for fellows who want to create meaningful connections with young people who are looking for extra support with their schoolwork. Fellows will work with underserved communities and foster a love of learning in a virtual after school setting.
The task of changing the world happens one step at a time, by people motivated to do the work. By volunteering with an organization in this space, you will be contributing to forward movement for families, communities, and the world at large.
Volunteering for a health-focused organization is a great option for anyone with an eye toward pre-med or public health. You’ll gain experience tracking and responding to community health issues, learning the fundamentals of emergency medicine, and an opportunity to advocate for improved health practices.
Volunteering for a political campaign online will be an entirely new experience. Fellows will have the opportunity to support your candidates with virtual canvassing, voter registration, and designing social media campaigns. Outside of the presidential elections, get involved with a cause you believe in, including climate action, reproductive justice, immigration, and LGTBQ+ rights.
Volunteering in the field of environmental conservation gives fellows an opportunity to positively impact the environment by advocating, and educating online to fight climate change. Fellows will develop skills in building social media campaigns, blogging, and producing educational materials.
During this time you'll continue to work with coaches and peers to help you build on your strengths and identify areas of improvement. Building on Year On’s Design Curriculum, our Foundational and Professional Skills Curriculum helps you build skills for life and work. Personalized coaching allows you to get the focus you need to help set goals, learn valuable practices, and break down barriers.
Understand how to complete high-quality work and grow your skills. Learn how your new skills guide your future career aspirations and choices.
44% of students who graduate college are underemployed and more than 60% say that college didn’t prepare them for their first job.
That doesn’t need to be you.
After building your portfolio you’ll realize all of the transferable skills you’ve learned that are applicable across industries and jobs.
Complete an eight-week externship with a real company who is an industry leader and making incredible impact in the world. Externships are your ticket to a front row seat to an experience most students don’t get until their senior year of college. CEOs, partners, and executives will share their expert advice and mentorship to see you grow and succeed in your program.
Venture Capital Analyst
Creative Digital Marketing
SEO Marketing and Content Creation
Social Media Marketing Intelligence
AI Advertising Data Training & Analysis
Music Artist & Music Label Business Development
Before your externship starts, we will work with you on the professional development needed to prepare for your externship.
Internships and externships are very similar in that they are time-limited jobs that provide purposeful, short-term work experience in a professional setting. Externships are typically shorter in duration than internships, are generally unpaid, and are intended to give students a short but meaningful professional experience that can aid in their path to career.
The cost of the program in $7,995. Students may opt to earn up to 18 semester credits for their work in our program through a partnership with Portland State University, and there is an additional cost of $1,700 for this academic coursework. This administrative fee is set by Portland State University and the Gap Year Association, and it covers enrollment in special student status at Portland State, grading, and registrar costs.
No, but we take care to match our participants with one of our coaches based on a number of factors, the most important of which is impact potential.
Our coaches are enormously skilled and enjoy working with young people with diverse interests. It doesn’t happen often, but if the match between participant and coach is not proceeding well we’ll intervene, and if the situation is untenable we’ll match you to a new coach.
We look to match our participants with a coach based on the potential for learning outcomes. Our coaches are working professionals who are working in a variety of fields, many of which will be relevant to the interests to an individual student. Coaches share professional savvy from their own work experiences and help contextualize that for the participants they advise based on the interests of the individual. For instance, a skill we focus on in the program like negotiation would be applied differently for a participant interested in entrepreneurship versus another participant focused on the performing arts. It isn’t just about learning the skills; coaching adds the depth and insight and perspective of working professionals that show how those skills can be applied with professional etiquette. Some of the companies at which our coaches are employed full-time include Google, Lyft, University of California San Francisco, Airbnb, Fire Capital Management, Newsela, Coach, Zapier, PopEd - The Education Studio, Story Count, Foundry College, Diversibility, Tesla, and Microsoft.
Yes, you’ll be able to choose from a variety of virtual volunteer options to select one that matches your interests most closely.
Yes, academic credit can be earned by those wishing to do so. Students have the option to earn up to 18-quarter hours (12-semester credits) of college credit through Portland State University via a partnership with the Gap Year Association (GYA). Students interested in earning academic credit for their gap experience at Year On will be enrolled in a non-degree seeking student status at Portland State University where they’ll choose from more than a dozen courses specifically designated for participants in gap year programs like Year On. All coursework can be completed remotely. Assignments include reading, journaling, and writing, and there is a significant amount of flexibility in terms of how you can tailor your focus of study within each course. Since Portland State University is an accredited institution through the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, coursework completed at PSU is widely accepted throughout the country at both public universities and private institutions. To ensure that PSU credit will successfully transfer and not interfere with a deferral plan, we encourage students to contact their college or university’s admissions office directly.
Possibly, and only if you’re planning to earn academic credit. According to current federal guidelines on 529 plans, funds can be withdrawn without penalty to pay tuition and fees at any postsecondary educational institution with a federal school code. Portland State University’s federal school code is 003216. However, It’s always best to consult a licensed financial planner before making any financial moves with your tax-advantaged college fund.