Some students take a year off between school and university, to work or to travel. Do the advantages of this outweigh the disadvantages?
It is true these days that many high school leavers choose to start their work or take a trip before going to university. While a gap year can bring some immediate drawbacks, I am convinced that it is more likely to have long-term benefits for their lives.
On the one hand, young students are very likely to encounter several difficulties when delaying their university study. One of these problems is the delay in academic progress caused by spending one year of school. It is understandably almost impossible for young people to enjoy their experiences in doing a job or traveling to a new place but still arrange a certain amount of time for revision. As a result, gap year takers may have to face the challenge of becoming familiar with the knowledge at school again, receiving more pressure of catching up with their peers. Besides, the life out of the university campus may prove to be mentally and physically overwhelming for inexperienced school leavers. They, for instance, may be at risk of being exploited in an exhausting job or face potential dangers on their trips to a new country. If not well prepared for such possible obstacles, young high school graduates can suffer from unintended consequences.
On the other hand, I would argue that these disadvantages are outweighed by the positive effects. A gap year is an ideal opportunity for students to learn about what is not taught at university. Working with other people who are experts in a particular field can give these newcomers not only understanding of the job but also valuable practical lessons to help them become more mature. When it comes to applying for a position in a company, employers tend to favorably consider applicants who possess extensive experience in life and the occupation. Furthermore, in terms of recreation, having a year to relax can be advantageous as students can have a chance to relieve stress in the study. With a comfortable and willing attitude, undergraduates can acquire knowledge more effectively in comparison with those who go to university straight away.
In conclusion, despite some negative aspects, it seems to me that the benefits of a gap year are more significant for the reasons mentioned.