Real Gap Experience recently conducted an extensive report to find out the motivations of why students travel and whether travelling enhances students career prospects.
Hands down the main reason why students travelled was to explore the world and have fun, although from the results of the survey shows students were also considering how travel can benefit their careers at the same time. This may be down to increased competition in the job market and students looking at how they could stand out in the crowd.
"80% of students stated they benefited from increased confidence from travelling"
Students that had travelled with us advised they had experienced many benefits taking a Gap Year. Confidence and independence were rated as the top soft skills acquired through travelling. Many other students commented on a greater insight into life, culture and people and how living away from home gained them more life experience and improved their decision making skills
“85% of employers stated they would encourage students to gain increased confidence, independence and decision making skills through travel”.
The importance of personal development cannot be underestimated for anyone starting out on their career journey with many employers opting for assessment centres as a means to select candidates it is important to be able to stand out from the crowd not just on paper but also in person. Spending time at an overseas volunteering project is a fantastic way to challenge and learn about yourself whilst helping others away from the usual home comforts
Volunteering and internships are the best way to make travel productive. Including either of these elements to your Gap Year or travel will increase your learning experience and help you stand out in the recruitment process.
Both Medical and Animal Management are proving to be popular choices such as the Game Ranger internships in South Africa offering students the chance to volunteer alongside experiencing life on a Big 5 Game Reserve whilst completing a FGASA level one field guide qualification.
There are many volunteering programmes that may be in your chosen career industry such as working with children, animals, conservation, marine science, building and sports coaching.
You can also gain international work experience with our huge range of Paid Work Abroad in Australia, New Zealand and China.
To read the report in full and learn more about making your Gap Year productive.. read the full report and start planning how to travel and Brand: ‘Me’