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Gap year - all ideas welcome.

(16 Posts)
zamantha Mon 10-Jun-13 20:29:40

We want to plan a gap year for our DC - eventually Engineering is the goal. Want to know has anybody gone through UCAS process to defer for a year? Or do we wait another year? One option might be that they do some further exams/re-takes and works as an assistant in the school. Want to plan a volunteer trip abroad though - even in summer months. Have done and are doing Engineering Summer schools in uni's we are all interested in.

Worry a bit about all the open days - one friend says, wait for the offers and then they invite you for a look around day. How are uni's about deferring? What about if misses grades first time - do they keep it on table until grades achieved? Am looking at fairly competitive unis and they should achieve competitive grades - if not immediately - then eventually.
Finally, how did you help to plan a gap year? What did your DC do? Was it useful?

creamteas Mon 10-Jun-13 20:47:05

You can both apply for deferred entry or apply after A levels it doesn't matter which.

Applying during the gap year is helpful in that you know the A level grades so can target the right universities, but need to find out if they will require you to come for interview (which can be tricky if overseas).

Most universities have general open days (June/July and Sept) which anyone can go to. So you could start looking around some unis this month.

senua Mon 10-Jun-13 21:52:52

I don't quite understand why you are so involved in the planning of the gap year. It's their life, leave it up to them.

NewFerry Tue 11-Jun-13 06:44:26

If they are looking at engineering it's worth knowing that one if the unis (Loughborough I think) offers a maths course to keep the maths skills up to date.

I'm not clear whether you/DC are considering this because of wanting a gap year, or because of concern at meeting the grade requirements first time round. If its the latter, many unis also offer a 1 year foundation course with lower grade requirements that leads onto the first year of the full engineering degree.
If its the former, have DC looked at the year in Industry scheme? It will give them more relevant experience, and some cash to put towards their student days.

zamantha Tue 11-Jun-13 11:22:23

Helpful so far - thank you.

Some DC need more support than others - not all are able to arrange and organise for all sorts of reasons. You'll just to have to take it on trust Senua that this parent is doing right by their DC/young person.

Anyone know about voluntary organisations /trips abroad for Gap students - is there a book? Sure there is!

zamantha Tue 11-Jun-13 11:28:24

Yes, I know about the foundation courses - but thank you for the tip.

We feel that my son needs a bit more experience before going to uni - history of SEN although now doing very well, July born and it tells.

School have suggested they have kept some students as Maths Assistants ( he already is a trained mentor) which is a possible option, particularly if grades are not perfect but working experience and an organised trip abroad would also be good.

Want to gather ideas for him!

Copthallresident Thu 13-Jun-13 13:19:03

zamantha I too will be supporting my immature dyspraxic DD in the planning of her gap year, because otherwise she might well have to be rescued by the fire brigade having spent the year amongst rising piles of paper in her bedroom. It is precisely to give her the space to mature and gain life skills to avoid the same happening when she starts, if all goes well, uni that she is taking a gap year in the first place. She will be travelling to a school supported by a charity we have long been involved with to teach English.

I might have tried to support my highly organised, mature and independent DD1 too as far as she would let me but she decided she didn't want to risk a break given the knowledge requirements of studying Science.

They are all different, aren't they?

guineapiglet Thu 13-Jun-13 13:28:02

My daughter is adamant she wants a gap year - and I am very supportive. She has been recovering from a prolonged illness which went on throughout GCSES and still rears its head now - she has started A2 courses and is starting to look at University courses, but feels she needs a rest away from studying, and to get some skills.... she is also younger and still not quite ready to contemplate such a big step. I am amazed and impressed that she has got this far, but can see I have a battle on my hands with (academic) husband, who thinks she will be very disadvantaged if she has a gap year...... she has been through such a lot, that I just want her to relax and have some time to be herself again to recover herself. She has been working in a pub on Saturdays for the past year, so am hoping something to keep her occupied and earning will come her way - some are ready to go and some aren't but I think it is reasonable for parents to want to help and be involved - the college is running a GAP fair next month so am hoping to get some ideas there - if anyone has any brilliant ideas we are open to suggestions.....

Leeds2 Thu 13-Jun-13 20:32:14

My friend's DD went as a camp assistant to Camp America. Was only during the summer, but thoroughly enjoyed it and vastly improved her confidence.

zamantha Thu 13-Jun-13 22:07:42

All posts helpful. Consoling too. Yes, some of us mums have to support their organisation skills and apparently the brain keeps developing until 25 - so there is a way to go before some are fully fledged!

Am about to book a mtg with the school to broach possibility of a 3rd sixth form year and will look into work experience placements and maybe consider foundation years but we think he needs a year more at home - intuition really!

I'm also proud of how far my DS has come .

Eastpoint Fri 14-Jun-13 06:24:51

Raleigh International is well run & structured so the teenager can spend the autumn earning money & then go.

ideas for you

zamantha Fri 14-Jun-13 16:47:19

Thank you Eastpoint, Heard about this in passing and wanted to track it down. Thank you very much

zamantha Fri 14-Jun-13 17:20:21

Just been reading the web page sent - a host of ideas.

Mumsnet is just great! :This is how I put my son onto perfect summer schools for him that he was hesitant about and then absolutely loved.

New adventures for him to look into now!

guineapiglet Sat 15-Jun-13 10:11:44

Does anyone know of anything similar a bit closer to home, their work is really impressive but can't see her going that far yet....

zamantha Sun 16-Jun-13 08:40:48

I would also be interested with ideas closer to home as another option.

How about work experience - what have your young people been doing?

guineapiglet Mon 17-Jun-13 14:36:07

Well my daughter has been working in a pub for the past 9 months, mainly Saturdays, some shift work and extras, doing mainly food prep, but some waitressing, bar work etc, it is good pay and she has really enjoyed it, so at least has that under her belt when she applies for other things.

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