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Gap Year & Short-Term Positions

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The gap year refers to a period of time, usually one or two years after graduation, when students take a break from education to work or volunteer before continuing with graduate/professional school or starting a longer-term job. These short-term experiences help students explore career paths and gain experience. In some cases, these experiences will turn into longer-term.

Tip: Think about your motivation: Why do you want to take a gap year or two? Have you thoroughly thought about how this might fit with your future goals?

Define your goals: Are you interested in expanding your resume, living independently, clarifying your interests, or experiencing a different culture?

Research: What are your options?

Plan ahead: Planning ahead is useful in order to avoid missing deadlines for applications or fellowships. Give yourself ample time to update any international travel documents you may need, save money, or book trips in advance.

To help you explore a variety of options, we created the following list of resources commonly used by Yale students and alums. Keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list; we intend for you to use it as a starting point and not as an end point.

For additional short-term opportunities, look at your specific career fields of interest in the career resources database, the Health Professions page, and Yale's Fellowship and Funding website. You can also meet with an OCS adviser to further discuss your options.

Visitors to this website using the database, should refer to our terms of use policy.

Gap Year Resources

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20 Writing Fellowships You Should Bookmark Now

Are you an emerging or established creative or non-fiction writer? Check out these unique funding and residency opportunities for writers. Deadlines change often, so be sure to bookmark these fellowships to your ProFellow account for updates and announcements.
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Achievement First: Public Charter Schools (Teacher-in-Residence Program)

We know the first year of teaching can be incredibly challenging. That’s why we’ve created a program that pairs those new to the teaching field with a team of dedicated supports, coaches, and exemplary teachers from which to learn. The Teacher-in-Residence (TIR) program is a teaching opportunity designed specifically for those who want to start a career in education but have little to no teaching experience. The TIR program provides a one-year pathway to become a lead teacher at Achievement First. During the course of the residency, TIRs receive high quality professional development, work alongside our strongest teachers, and gain hands-on experience in the classroom through co-teaching and small group instruction. TIRs gain increased responsibilities in classroom instruction throughout the year so that they are prepared to become lead teachers by the end of the year.
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Alaska Fellows Program

The Alaska Fellows Program, constituted by three fellowship sites in Anchorage, Juneau, and Sitka, is a near-year-long postgraduate fellowship program that places dynamic recent college graduates with nonprofit and public-sector organizations across Alaska.
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Aledade Fellowship

The Aledade Fellowship is a one year commitment designed and guided by Aledade’s Leadership Team. Fellows take part in substantive, hands-on projects that foster an understanding of overall operations at Aledade, a fast-growing Series B start up.
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American India Foundation/William J. Clinton Fellowship for Service in India

AIF's Clinton Fellowship is an immersive volunteer service program training and placing young professionals to support development organizations in India. Through service and fieldwork, Fellows learn about inclusive leadership in the fields of education, livelihoods, and public health. Fellows support grassroots organizations at a crucial moment of scalability through capacity building and skill sharing.
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American Jewish Committee - Goldman Summer Fellowship

AJC's Goldman Summer Fellowship Program is designed to develop future leaders in the areas of international and domestic politics, diplomacy, public relations, and management.
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AmeriCorps

AmeriCorps programs do more than move communities forward; they serve their members by creating jobs and providing pathways to opportunity as they enter the workforce. AmeriCorps places thousands of people into intensive service positions where they learn valuable skills, earn money for education, and develop a strong sense of civic responsibility.
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AmeriCorps NCCC

AmeriCorps NCCC is a full-time, residential, team-based program for young adults, age 18-24 (with no upper age limit to serve as a team leader). Members develop leadership skills and strengthen communities by completing service projects and gaining life experience.
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AmeriCorps VISTA

AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) members bring passion and perseverance where the need is greatest: to organizations that help eradicate poverty. AmeriCorps VISTA members serve as a catalyst for change, living and working alongside community members to meet our nation’s most pressing challenges and advance local solutions.
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amfAR: Allan Rosenfield, M.D., HIV/AIDS Public Policy Internship and Fellowship program

The Allan Rosenfield Internship and Fellowship Program at amfAR, the Foundation for AIDS Research, was established to honor the distinguished public health leader Allan Rosenfield, M.D., dean of Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health for 22 years, chair of amfAR’s program board, and a longtime member of the Foundation’s board of trustees. This training program has been established for exceptional college undergraduates and graduate students who aspire to become leaders in public health and in the fight against the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
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Anseye Pou Ayiti

Anseye Pou Ayiti will raise education outcomes in disadvantaged areas of Haiti by recruiting and training outstanding teachers for existing schools. Transformational teaching and leadership will equip all children with the knowledge, skills, and mindsets to achieve their full potential with equal opportunity, pursue lives of mutual prosperity, and contribute to a more enlightened 21st century world.
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APAICS: Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies: Congressional Fellowship

The APAICS Congressional Fellowship Program offers full-time legislative and public policy fellowships in Washington, DC, providing exceptional graduates and young professionals with an opportunity to work on policy issues as staff members in a congressional office. The program aims to build leadership skills, encourage political civic engagement, and foster a strong interest in public service careers.

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