Hi, I'm thinking about applying for CBYX next year which would send me for a year before I go to college. This will be my fourth year of learning German in school, and I love it so much. Do you think I should apply if it will interfere with college?
I sort of have a problem with the way our education system affects us. (Warning, personal subjective opinion ahead!)
We are brought up where our lives revolve around school. It becomes our world. Then we read the mission statements of schools and there is always something that has to do with a “culturally rich environment” “diversity” “create contributing members of society” or “being a part of the community”. But once someone actually wants go go out into our global communities, learn culture, become diverse and such, we are confronted with people who sit us down and scare us away from these outrageous thoughts. You are putting your education at risk! You are one of the best in this school, that name on the principal’s list is going to be gone forever! You already have everything planned out perfectly! You’ve got everything going for you! YOU CAN NEVER LEAVE!
We’ve gotten used to being stuck with this never ending pressure to put pen and paper education at the top of our list. School, school, school. But there’s other types of education out there. You probably have noticed how a lot of people in the US feel towards a “gap year”. It’s like taboo. How DARE I put off college for a year?! That’s just lazy! If you do it, you’ll never want to go to college ever! Yet, in other countries, teenagers are in a lot of cases ENCOURAGED to take a year off after high school and go abroad. It’s considered good and EDUCATIONAL!
Why don’t we have the same mindset?
I don’t know. But we should change it.
You go apply for that scholarship. Take a year off and have the best time of your life. Make mistakes. Grow from them. Try something new. Learn a new language. Make life long friends. Make temporary friends. Tell your stories. Listen to their stories. Create connections. Learn about things. Learn about yourself. Become a part of the world and not just a spectator.
Put off a year of college. It’s going to be ok.
Seriously. Do it. No college can teach you any of the things you learn in a year abroad.