Winterline’s gap year and semester programs give students opportunities to earn different certifications to prepare them for various careers. But what are the benefits of having these certifications?
Each year, high school seniors approaching graduation experience an unfamiliar combination of stress, anticipation, and anxiety. As students plan how they’ll spend the precious time between graduation and the start of college, many compare the benefits of a romantic quest for adventure and self discovery with the more pragmatic search for professional experience.
For students planning a gap year or gap semester, Winterline offers the unique opportunity to do both. Students enrolled in Winterline’s Work in the Wild semester program travel to India, Cambodia, Thailand, and the Philippines, where they earn both Wilderness First Responder and PADI Open Water certifications.
Certifications like these may prove incredibly beneficial to students pursuing careers in everything from outdoor education, medicine, health care, environmental science, coaching, camp counseling, hospitality, tourism, and the like.
While general experience in these fields is useful, students’ individual experiences can often be abstract and “unofficial”, making it difficult for a future employer to feel confident about a potential hire. Inexperienced students seeking a job often face a frustrating catch-22 when they lack the experience needed to get a job they were planning to use for experience.
Certified students avoid this conundrum, bypassing the stress and disappointment. Our affiliated certification programs are internationally recognized. So by training for and receiving a certification from them, students have a chance to build connections with instructors and get their foot in the door - a major advantage in many competitive fields.
Certifications provide undeniable proof of one’s burgeoning commitment and expertise within a particular field. Pursuing a certification may also be the solution for a more goal-oriented individual, or an answer to doubtful friends or family members who ask, “what will you get out of your gap semester?”.
For students planning to study at a liberal arts college, earning a certification can offer a refreshing dose of real world skill-building before entering a highly academic environment.
Not only do Winterline students leave the program with these valuable certifications on their resume, they also make lifelong friends, hone their skills, and develop their worldview while travelling through breathtaking environments.
Interested in applying to our 'Work in the Wild' Fall semester program?