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Author: Claire Ashmead

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Claire Ashmead is a senior at Princeton University studying history and pursuing certificates in East Asian Studies, Humanistic Studies, and Creative Writing. Prior to her freshman year, Claire participated in Princeton University’s Bridge Year Program in China, volunteering with Yunnan Environmental Development Institute, an organization that monitors and researches water management in Yunnan. Bridge Year is a tuition-free program open to incoming Princeton students.

Posted Dec. 29, 2016, 2:03 p.m. by Claire Ashmead | View Comments
gap year china

A gap year allows you to slow down, check up on yourself and ask what it is that really matters to you. I began my gap year by making a map of myself. I was sitting outside a noodle house in the small village of Shaxi in Yunnan Province. It was late September, and I had finally realized that I was taking a gap year not just to practice my Chinese but also because I felt profoundly lost. This was reflected in the archipelago I drew to represent my mind: a Land of Curiosity, an Isle of Ambivalence and a ...