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Cohort 2021-22

Ally Carey

Atlanta, GA

“Hi! My name is Ally, and I’m from Atlanta, Georgia. To begin my gap year, I participated in a 30-day backpacking trip over the summer with NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School). We trekked 120 miles through the Eastern Alaskan mountain range while learning wilderness first aid, off-trail navigation, and other backcountry skills. For the rest of this year, I’m studying Spanish in Málaga, Spain, and living with a host family! I have a few hours of class every day, and in my free time, I’ve been getting to know the city, traveling, and exploring new hobbies (the NYT Crossword is my current addiction). I’ve loved my time here so far, and I can’t wait to see what the rest of the year has in store!”


Aryaman Dalal

Indore, India

Hi! My name is Aryaman. I am from Indore, India. I plan on spending my gap year exploring my interests and broadening my understanding of the world so that I can learn more about who I am and further discover how I want to make an impact in the world. Currently, my day involves learning about renewable energy and food startup technologies as an intern at StartupBootCamp Australia. I am also doing a semester with Global Citizen Year Academy. In my free time, I am learning Java and Python, exploring my interest in statistics, focusing on personal health, and learning about personal finance. As the year progresses, I want to pursue AI/ML based personal projects in finance, learn more about blockchain technology, and explore cinematography and digital art. Currently, I am uncertain about my travel plans, but I hope to travel to different parts of India and, if possible, travel abroad. I am very excited to see where the year takes me! 


Grace Huber

Incline Village, NV

Hi! My name is Grace. I am taking part in the National Outdoor Leadership School’s (NOLS) Wilderness Medicine and Rescue Semester begins with a month of classroom-based wilderness EMT curriculum and two months of NOLS field expeditions in Lander, Wyoming. It is a chance to learn advanced wilderness medicine. During this segment of the semester, she will improve leadership capabilities and outdoor rescue skills through canyoneering trips, a rescue climbing course, a Nordic skiing expedition, week-long solo backpacking trips, and avalanche rescue education. This second part of the semester would be interspersed with opportunities to put newly-learned wilderness medicine skills to the test through practice drills and mock injury incidents.


Mariana Meza

El Paso, TX

Hello everyone! My name is Mariana and I am so excited for you to accompany me on all of my gap year endeavors! During the course of the fall semester, I plan to carry out my role as a community organizer and advocate, assuming the position of March For Our Lives Texas State Director and interning at Las Americas Immigrant Advocacy Center, a law firm that provides pro bono legal aid to migrants on the US-Mexico border. In the spring, I hope to spend a few months in Mexico, living with my extended family, helping my aunt with her macrame business, and immersing myself in the culture. Throughout the year, I will also engage in and cultivate my broad interests, e.g. learning how to play the guitar, gardening, attempting different visual art mediums, etc. Last year was burdened by the global pandemic, which is why I am looking forward to this gap year as an opportunity for healing, introspection, and learning. You can expect a diverse range of experiences from my gap year, which I strive to document as authentically as possible. Thank you for following my gap year journey!



Charlie Ringel

Cincinnati, OH

Hi! My name is Charlie and I’m from Cincinnati, Ohio. I am participating in a nine-month program in Israel with 180 other gap year students from across the US and Canada. I am spending my first four months in Jerusalem taking immersive academic courses and exploring the Old City. After Jerusalem, I will spend one month exploring more remote parts of Israel, as well as Poland. I will then live in Tel Aviv for four months while participating in a volunteer internship.