Gap years are becoming increasingly popular and it’s easy to see why. The opportunities to travel, experience new things and live a little are endless. When the gap year comes to an end, however, it can take some time to come back to reality and establish the next steps you should be taking. To avoid this, here are some top tips to ensure taking a gap year aids your employability, rather than hinders it.
Take on a Project
Travelling is great fun, but it looks far better on your CV if you can show a potential employer that you did so for a reason. Taking on a volunteering role is a great way of doing this. It reflects well on you for obvious reasons, but also helps you pick up a few workplace skills along the way. These include teamwork, communication, leadership and many more, depending on the activity to hand. Whether it’s something you take on individually or through an organised trip, being a volunteer turns your gap year into a worthwhile and rewarding adventure. Check out opportunities with The Great Projects here.
Pursue Your Passion
A great way to spend your year out is to take the time to chase a dream of yours. This may be something relevant to what you want to study at university or pursue as a career, for example if you’re keen to work in the art and design industry, take up photography. This way, you have a portfolio of work when you return which you can use to impress employers. Creating something also shows that you haven’t taken a year out to be lazy – a preconception that some traditional hirers can sometimes hold.
Blog Your Travels
Whether you’re home or abroad for your gap year, creating a blog of your experience is a great idea. It’ll be an excellent product to show employers, but it also demonstrates your solid organisation skills if you’ve kept it up to date. It also indicates being digitally savvy and can help improve your written skills. On a personal level, it will be great to look back on your gap year experience by having a record of it, too.
Keep Seeking Employment
It’s harder applying for jobs and doing well in interviews if you’re out of practice and haven’t gained any work experience. It’s a good idea to keep yourself in the employment game by either getting a job while you’re travelling or finding yourself some kind of employment at home. This way, you can still gather work experience while you pursue whatever else you wish to. It looks a lot better on your CV if you have had at least some work on the go.