EF Gap Year &
Excel Academy Scholarship

Each year, three Excel Academy graduates will be selected to receive scholarships that cover the complete cost of any EF Gap Short-Term program.

Our Short-Term programs are approximately four weeks long, taking place in various countries and at different times throughout the year. Each program may focus on one specific location or give students the chance to explore multiple cities and countries; students travel with one cohort for the duration of the program with the 24/7 support of Boston-based and local EF staff.

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Short-Term programs

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Students who apply to this program must be...
  • At least 18 years old
  • A graduate of Excel Academy High School
  • A United States citizen who holds or will receive a US passport at least 30 days prior to departure
  • Currently enrolled in the first or second year of a postsecondary academic or training program
  • In good standing with Excel Academy office of Post-Secondary Success, Excel advisors, and their postsecondary institution
  • Independent, able to adapt to new situations and locations, and have a high tolerance for ambiguity
  • Able to meet the  EF Gap Year Essential Eligibility Criteria
Application process

Step 1: Speak with your Post-Secondary Success Counselor to determine if this program is a good fit for you. 

Step 2: Register for and attend a virtual or in-person EF Gap Information Session:

  1. Information Session 1 (in-person): Tuesday, October 3, 2023
    1. Time: 5:30 pm (ET)
    2. Location: Excel Academy Charter High School
  2. Information Session 2 (virtual): Thursday, October 26, 2023
    1. Time: 5:30 pm (ET)
    2. Location: Zoom: Register to receive the link to this meeting.

Register for the information sessions here.

Step 3: Submit an Excel Scholarship Application Form and Statement of Intent by the deadline listed below. 

Step 4: If you are selected as a finalist, you will be invited to schedule an interview with an EF Advisor. Following the interview, winning recipients are notified directly and will be invited to meet with EF staff at the EF office in Cambridge, MA, to begin preparing for their program.

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Everything you need to know to apply

From financial details to frequently asked questions. 

The deadline to apply for the 2023–2024 Excel Scholarship is November 1, 2023. 

Financial details
The financial package that EF Gap Year is providing
  • Providing full ride (i.e., no program fees) for short-term program of recipient’s choice and, 
  • Distributing $1,500 discretionary spending money to scholarship recipients to utilize in preparation for the program and to maximize on-program experience. 
Financial Disclaimers

Scholarship recipients will receive a Form 1099 from EF – this form is used to report taxable income to the IRS.

  • The practical implications of the Form 1099 are that approximately $10,000 will be counted towards the recipient’s annual income in the tax year that the recipient travels on the Gap program 
  • If the recipient is claimed as a dependent by their parents or legal guardians, then the 1099 should fall under the parents’ or legal guardians’ taxable income; if the student files taxes independently, then the taxable income should fall solely to that student. 
  • No tax is withheld by EF, so the student (or guardians) should plan to cover the tax bill when it’s due. It is our suggestion that the recipient sets aside ($10,000) x (filer’s marginal tax rate) as that amount is not taken out by EF and will be owed during the corresponding tax season. 

The above tax rules are from the IRS and not by EF – this process is to comply with US tax regulations and is not a discretionary policy posited by EF.

Do I need a Visa to attend short term Gap programs?

No, American passport holders do not require a Visa to travel on any of these programs.

Can I apply if I am not a US Citizen?

Unfortunately, EF Gap Year Programs can only accommodate those who have a US or Canadian Passport.

Can I apply if I don’t currently have a US Passport? 

Yes! You certainly can apply if you don’t have a passport but are eligible for or in the process of obtaining your passport. You must have your passport in hand 30 days before departure in order to be eligible for the program. 

Are there any resources about this scholarship in other languages?

Your PSS counselor has resources about this scholarship in other languages, reach out to them for more info. 

What are the program rules? 

You can find the Rules of the Road and more general information here. 

Can I get credit for EF Gap programs? 

Students will earn 3.75 credits on the Global Business in London course or 3.0 credits on the Sustainable Development in Costa Rica. The rest of the programs are NOT credit bearing.

Anything else? Contact your PSS Counselor

Don’t hesitate to reach out to your PSS counselor with additional questions!