A gap year is when a student takes a sabbatical or a long break after finishing school.  It usually is for a year, where students normally travel or take on a casual job. There are pros and cons to consider with everything, and gap years are certainly no exception.

Here are some positives and negatives to think about before deciding to take a gap year.

It enables a student to pursue other passions and hobbies which had previously been neglected because studies took priority. By focusing on other interests, a student may well discover a passion that they would like to pursue as a career, like becoming a chef!

A gap year can make it possible to find employment,  gain experience in different fields and save money. Having money creates a feeling of security and confidence when living independently for the very first time. Spending time working and gaining experience will look good on a CV, and extra skills will be learnt which will impress future employers.

Once a student starts studying or working, taking time off work is much more difficult, and taking a gap year is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to travel for a long period of time. This gives the opportunity to undoubtedly gain the skills to live and work self sufficiently, which will in turn better prepare a student to study independently whilst at university.

With the positives come the negatives. Losing academic momentum is a possibility because it is hard to start studying after a long break. When taking a gap year, the student must have a clear plan mapped out, otherwise it is very easy to waste valuable time and money. Traveling and not receiving an income can be very expensive. Another aspect to take into account, is that the student will be one year behind all their peers.

So a student needs to weigh up all the facts first. The Francois Ferreira Academy offers a special Assistant Chef course which is accredited with CATHSSETA, with a duration of 6 months which is perfect for those who want to take a gap year and want to pursue their passion for cooking. For more information about the Assistant Chef course and other courses, contact Donia on marketing@francoiferreira.com or 044 884 0765.