Gaps are great. Some might have said the cute gap you had in your front teeth at age 5 was one, others would consider the land gap between Australia and New Zealand to be another, but the best gap of them all is the one you have after finishing high school and before starting uni. The Gap year (or years).
When you were a freshly minted 17/ 18 year old graduate wearing your school leavers jersey, you probably had no idea about what you wanted to study and now you’re likely bitter that your one appointment with the school careers advisor didn’t translate into choosing a degree that you love with your heart and soul.
A gap year is like the Eat, Pray Love equivalent for all young people who don’t have the coin to drop on a trip to Bali, you really find yourself, or simply, have more time to understand what makes you tick without accumulating stacks of debt in the process.
Extra funds are a big plus of taking a gap year (if you’ve decided to work). Imagine coming to uni a year on, and not even having to think twice about purchasing a $5 Dominos pizza AND adding the extra sauce.. Absolute bliss.
Whether you’re gallivanting the globe, working, or dabbling with other things during your gap year, as someone not enrolled in tertiary studies, you also have the additional benefit of getting inside info and feedback about what the courses and experiences are actually like from you chums who do attend uni. You might even get the full run down on halls food without having to consume it yourself!
Ultimately if you’re unsure, prolong the decision to come to uni, there’s no rush, you don’t need to worry, the WSU will still be sizzlin’ sausages for you in a years time.
Going Straight to University
Gap years – a currently damaged institution in this post COVID world. Going straight to uni from high school, however, is a Kiwi institution as old as they come and as strong as ever. “Start ‘em young”, they say in the staffroom, before brainwashing us that university is the only logical step onwards from finishing off that Level 3 English exam.
Sure, I don’t agree with the pressure we all get to go straight to university from high school, but fuck, first year was the best fun. Fresh out of high school, surrounded by like-minded people your age – I can’t imagine it’s the same coming back a year or so later. If that one chick who won’t shut up about her gap year travel is right, “Europe changed her life”, so she must feel far worldlier than the fresh 18-year old’s bursting through the halls’ doors.
Halls, O’Week, the pain of ACCTN101 – they’re all rites of passage, and there’s nothing more comforting than doing it together with your peers. Plus, all the bastard first years get their first year free now anyway. The instigation of the Fees Free policy was basically Aunty Cindy giving a free pass to get on the piss with your mates for a year, and if you don’t like what you’ve studied at the end or you’ve got no brain cells left to carry on, then it doesn’t even matter because the taxpayers are paying for it instead! How good is that?
I get it, taking a gap year to earn some money or do some travelling is a wonderful idea, and if that’s what you did, then power to you. But, from now on the gappies are facing having to work retail in a crumbling job market, and about the only ‘Contiki’ they can take is the same basic white bitch Queenstown trip we all can’t escape on Instagram. So instead, they may as well pick a random Sport Science degree join us in the good old Waikato for a year of minimal effort and limited worries, and hopefully figure out what they want to do with their life sooner or later.