Feb
23
2015

Looking for more than a year of travel for your gap year?

GLA_pic2The fact that you’re reading this blog tells me you’re different from the rest.

You want to explore, see the world, and carve an exciting path into the future.

I went to the Queen’s Commerce program after high school, and despite it being an incredibly rigorous academic setting, I found my head somewhere else in the first two years. My grades were much lower than in high school, and I was didn’t have the same passion and excitement that I had when I applied.

Then, something happened. In third year of the program, almost every student in the program – including myself – went on exchange abroad for a semester.

But – because I am a bit like you – I decided to go on two exchanges: one in Hong Kong, and one in England.

Living and studying abroad was, by far, the most life-changing experience I’ve had to date – so much so that I refused to start my career anywhere else but outside of Canada when I graduated. I came back to Queen’s in fourth year with a newfound excitement for the global business world, and worked hard to get the career I wanted abroad.

It paid off.

So, for the last 5 years, I was living and working in Australia, Asia, Africa, and New York.

I had so many cool experiences in these places – I learned to surf and had close encounters with wildlife in Australia, I learned to speak Mandarin and was on a game show in China, and I climbed Mount Kilimanjaro for charity in Tanzania.

Travel stretched my mind, made me culturally sensitive and globally aware, and enriched my mind with an understanding of how things are done differently across geographies.

But travel, in my opinion, was only one part of the formula for the person I am today. In order to become a self-aware, purposeful, highly-skilled, and – most importantly – happy person, you need more than just time abroad.

That’s why my program – the Global Leadership Academy (GLA) – requires its students to do a volunteer abroad program prior to graduating, but it also requires a diverse array of other real-world achievements, such as Conquering a Physical Feat, Organizing an Event, Solving a Social Problem, and Doing an Internship.

If you want more than just a year of travel – you want a structured year of high-impact and transformational experiences – then take a look at our website (www.gla.academy), watch our video, or visit us at our booth at the Study & Go Abroad Fair in Toronto on March 1st.

Looking forward to seeing you!

 

Nothing but the best,

Joel Nicholson

Founder, Global Leadership Academy

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About the Author: Katie Idle

About our business, Study and Go Abroad is the 'go to' site for Canadians looking to study abroad, travel, intern or volunteer. We organize fairs twice a year in various cities in Canada, and I'd recommend getting down to one of them to check out all the exciting options. As for me, I'm a business woman and a travel junkie! I have always had a passion for travel and for experiencing new cultures. Brought up in England, I traveled Europe in my teens and early 20s. I have lived and worked on 3 continents; Europe, Africa and North America. I have traveled extensively worldwide both for work and for fun - and still can't believe how much of the world there is still to see!

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