The USA Gap Year Fairs Student Ambassador Scholarship was established to recognize students who have demonstrated outstanding motivation and determination to pursue Gap Year experiences. This year, we received a record-breaking number of applications, and we are pleased to award three $1,000 scholarships to Emily Braddock, Haby Sondo, and Nora Fried!



This fall, Emily will participate in Thinking Beyond Borders’ Asia Gap Semester in Thailand, Cambodia, and India. While abroad, she will explore her interest in international development by completing service projects, pursuing academic work, and experiencing cultural immersion firsthand through travel and homestays. She has deferred enrollment to Clark University in order to pursue her Gap Year.

“The Thinking Beyond Borders program is not only going to prepare me to study International Development in college, it’s also going to help me be an agent of social change. Thus, by supporting me, you’re essentially supporting the people and communities I will work with in my future career.”

-Emily Braddock, 2017 USA Gap Year Fairs Student Ambassador

Click here to support Emily’s Gap Year!



Haby will travel to the Dominican Republic with one of CIEE’s Service & Leadership Programs to work with local NGOs. As a South Bronx native, Haby is passionate about education reform in low-income communities and intends to make an impact on future generations as both an educator and an activist. She has deferred enrollment to Boston University in order to pursue her Gap Year.

“Education Reform is an issue which I have always felt strongly about. New York City has the most segregated school system in the entire country, something I have experienced firsthand. Students of a lower socioeconomic status are being thrust into their local school with poor quality instructors, scarcity of resources, and not enough preparation for success in higher educational institutions. This vision I have to understand poverty on a global scale can be brought to reality through a service oriented program with CIEE.”

-Haby Sondo, 2017 USA Gap Year Fairs Student Ambassador

Click here to support Haby’s Gap Year!


NORA FRIED – Montclair, NJ

As an outdoor enthusiast, Nora is thrilled to participate in HMI – High Mountain Institute’s Gap Semester in the American West and Patagonia in the fall to develop rock climbing and outdoor leadership skills. She will also travel to Iceland to study sustainability in the winter and hike the Pacific Crest Trail in the spring. In order to pursue a Gap Year, Nora has deferred enrollment to Macalester College where she plans to study Environmental Science and Geology. Nora’s USA Gap Year Fairs Student Ambassador Scholarship has been funded by HMI – High Mountain Institute.

“The opportunity to take a ‘year off’ seems to come once in a lifetime. Having this chance has allowed me to think about what I am really interested in studying and the qualities of my life that I truly value. I believe that the plans I have made for my gap year with HMI – High Mountain Institute will push me to grow as a backcountry explorer, allowing me to gain new wilderness skills and expand my areas of comfort both in the natural world and as a social being.”

-Nora Fried, 2017 USA Gap Year Fairs Student Ambassador


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