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#CollegeBoundStories: The Reimagined Gap Year

"My mom had me when she was 16. She's a nurse. I think she's done very well for herself. She has given me a great life. Now it's my turn to give back."

"I was attracted to the certainty of the Air National Guard. I get my college tuition paid for. I get a stipend. I have a guaranteed job. I don't want to play roulette with my future. My mom sacrificed too much for me to do that."

"I don't have any real fears about basic training—it's finite. I know that after that experience I won't have to worry about going into debt for college."

"My mom gave me this for graduation. Leaving my family will be hard."

"I never thought this next year in the Air National Guard was a 'gap year.' But the term works for me. It will be a year in the real world before college. I will appreciate college that much more because of it."