The Andover Townsman
---- — Middle and high school students can get a jump on their summer plans by attending Phillips Academy’s 24th annual Summer Opportunities Fair or Gap Year Fair this weekend. Both fairs are free and open to the public.
The Gap Year Fair will be held on Saturday, Feb. 1, from 3 to 5 p.m. in Kemper Auditorium, located in Elson Art Center on Chapel Avenue. It is sponsored by USA Gap Year Programs, which holds 30 such fairs across the country each year. High school graduates use a gap year to pursue other experiences before going off to college. According to Phillips, the popularity of gap years is growing at an exponential rate in the U.S. and the demand for informational events like fairs has increased dramatically.
Representatives from nearly 40 gap year organizations that focus on education, service and personal growth will attend the fair. Featured speaker Jane Sarouhan, a counselor at the Center for Interim Programs in Northampton, will discuss the gap year experience as well as the application process and the logistics of deferring college for a year.
Each year, approximately 15 to 20 Phillips Academy graduates take advantage of a gap-year experience and then attend their deferred college choices.
Additional information, including student testimonials and blogs, can be found at www.andover.edu/Academics/CollegeCounseling/GapYear.
The Summer Opportunities Fair will be held on Sunday, Feb. 2, from noon to 3 p.m. in the Smith Center, located off Route 28 near Salem Street. The event is sponsored by the Phillips Academy Summer Opportunities Office and the Parents of Students of Phillips Academy.
This fair gives middle and high school students and their families the chance to meet with representatives from more than 100 local, national and international summer programs covering a wide range of interests, including academics, language study, community service, camps, sports, arts, research, internships, outdoor adventure and international travel.
For more information on the Summer Opportunities Fair, visit www.andover.edu/summerops/fair.
Information on both fairs is also available by calling 978-749-4480.