Many a times students aspiring to crack NEET, JEE, NID and any other such entrance exams decide to drop a year to prepare for the same as they feel their preparation is not upto the mark due to most of the time being spent preparing for the boards. This may not be easy as one has to have complete dedication to succeed, battle peer pressure, watch fellow students attend college, nagging parents and also at times face depression.
If a student is certain of pursuing only a particular field and did not get admission in the institute of choice then taking time off to prepare may not be a bad idea. As per Mr Jagadeesh Kumar, dean, academic affairs, IIT Madras if students fail to perform well for whatever reason despite good preparation then it may not be a good idea to drop a year. In a competitive exam only those students who scored well but could not get the desired institute should wait for a year to apply again
Dip in motivation, lack of routine, absence of family support and insufficient guidance are the biggest roadblocks for the students during their year off.
Gap years can be transformational
Students who are unsure of their career/subject choices could use the gap year to explore their area of interest. Starting with self-exploration they can take some psychometric tests available online to map their skills and interests. They can also seek professional help and talk to people from the industry they are inclined towards.
Use this time to build your profile
For those planning to study abroad, they can use this time to build a holistic profile. They can pursue a special activity or project, learn or hone a new skill/language, take up relevant online certifications, do some volunteer work or take up internships to gain work experience etc
For those opting for a gap year, it is imperative to have a support system in your family, mentors and friends to help you remain focused throughout the year.