Job Search: Working On Your Gap Year

Taking a gap year is a brilliant experience: you’ll meet amazing people, learn skills that you can’t in a classroom, and it’ll set you up perfectly for whatever you have planned on your return. However, they can get expensive. Whether you’re staying in your country for a gap year or going abroad, working is the best way to ensure you’re getting a well-rounded experience, as well as topping up your gap year fund!


Why Work?

Firstly – money! Getting a paid position means you don’t need to worry about your finances, and can often lead to more exciting opportunities that you may have been unaware of before. Working abroad is a fantastic addition to any CV: whether you’re working on a cattle farm in rural Australia, helping children in the UK, or nursing sloths in a jungle sanctuary, it will show your work ethic, as well as initiative to find work wherever you are!

Working Abroad

This is fine if you have savings to fund your trip, but if you fall in love with a country, and want to stay out longer than you’ve budgeted for, it can be a terrible disappointment to have to come home. Voluntary positions abroad are the best way to fully immerse yourself in a country’s culture, and know you’re giving something back, for all the breath-taking experiences it will be giving you.

Working At Home

You don’t need to go abroad to make a difference! Staying at home presents just as many opportunities as going away does – just maybe with slightly worse weather! There are many projects set up in the UK to get students involved with the communities around them, offering placements of varying lengths. These placements range from working with the elderly, or under-privileged children, to helping out with environmental causes, or animals.

Different Kinds Of Work

Internships If you’re staying at home, why not use this time to explore any career paths that interest you? Apply for internships and work experience at a range of places – most companies offer them for anywhere between several weeks and six months. While some internships are paid, many just cover travel costs, so take this into account before applying. Voluntary work Volunteering, whether you’re at home or abroad, is the best way to give something back to a place you love. Choose the sector you love the most and research the different organisations that will help get you involved. Many charities will help you plan a trip, if you’re committed to helping out with their projects. It’s a great way to meet new people, and know you’re making a difference, rather than just visiting tourist hotspots and drinking on the beach! Manual labour If you’re not keen on sitting in an office, and want to do something more active, there are plenty of farms around the world that gladly welcome help from travellers. From strawberry picking in the UK, helping to pick and squash grapes in French vineyards, to herding cattle in the Australian outback, there’s a huge variety of things to get involved with. Work on your tan while getting a healthy dose of exercise, and on top, you usually get paid, or offered bed and board, meaning that part of your adventure is entirely free.

Working Requirements

Most countries that you’ll visit will require you to get a visa, so check what limitations are placed on your ability to work while you’re organising your trip. Many conditions allow you to work for a set number of months – but after that time, you’re more than likely going to want to move onto your next destination anyway! Some countries will allow you to stay past your visa allowance, as long as you work in a particular sector, such as harvesting. Working on your gap year is a brilliant way to spend your time before university or full time work, and you never know – you might just find yourself not coming home! Photo Credit: Shutterstock

If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the awkward situation one of our viewers, Diane submitted. She has recently worked with a co-worker on a group project. When it came time to present the project at a meeting, Diane let her co-worker present. While it went great, the co-worker proceed to take credit for nearly all of Diane's work. Frustrating to say the least!

SHOW MORE Show less

In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if your co-worker took credit for the work you did...right in front of your colleagues AND boss!

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

SHOW MORE Show less

If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the awkward situation one of our viewers, Cam submitted. He's been working at a job for awhile, but recently overheard a hiring manager making fun of a candidate with autism right after an interview-not only awkward, but VERY unprofessional!

SHOW MORE Show less

In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if witnessed a hiring manager at your organization making fun of a candidate who they had just interviewed who had autism.

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

SHOW MORE Show less

Starting a family is one of the biggest milestones in a person's life. It's in those first few months when a parent can really bond with their newborn and make lifelong memories. However, for some new dads, it can be difficult to juggle being a new parent while remaining dedicated to their career.

Fortunately, some companies have generous paternity leave policies that give new dads the ability to take time off of work to stay home with their child.

SHOW MORE Show less

There are LOTS of questions around resume dos and don'ts. There's so much advice out there that it can be overwhelming to try and figure out what's the correct answer.

During our weekly live Office Hours on YouTube, two of our coaches, Ariella Coombs and J.T. O'Donnell, answer questions live from viewers related to their job search, career success, on the job situations and more.

We complied a simple list of what we find to be the most common questions our coaches get about resumes. We hope you find this helpful.

Let's start with the basics...

SHOW MORE Show less

Back in March, we made the hard decision to change our private Facebook group of over 37 THOUSAND members to a fee-based only platform.

SHOW MORE Show less

In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if a recruiter called you a day EARLY for your phone interview (and you were NOT PREPARED!)

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

SHOW MORE Show less