On a hike with Scott in 2012...
Want to research ISA's website yourself? Check out the link below and get all the info for Maddie's gap year.
ISA Gap Year in England
What's It For?
Maddie has always been passionate about everything she does. She is never satisfied with second best, and strives to reach her own personal goals in every aspect of her life. Maddie's success in gymnastics and cheerleading demonstrate her determination and love for a challenge. She's always had a deep love for gymnastics because of the incredible mental toughness it requires. After gymnastics came cheer, a new and exciting challenge. She made varsity on the high school squad the first year she tried out, and even went on to win first place at USA Nationals with her team this past season. She finds her greatest happiness in exploring new places. As a kid, Maddie's father told her stories of castle ruins in England and beautiful green landscapes that went on for miles in Scotland. Naturally, Maddie wanted to see these amazing places for herself. She wanted to do everything her daddy did, actually -- whether it was hiking and climbing mountains, running marathons for an AIDS awareness foundation called APLA, a 7-day bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles, or traveling around Europe learning and growing in other cultures -- Maddie knew she wanted to do it all with her biggest role model. At a very young age, Maddie decided there was nothing she wanted to do more than travel to these far off lands before she was too grown up. She used to tell me all the time how she wanted to study abroad like my husband Scott. Maddie's biggest role model, however, would never see her reach that goal. Last year we lost Scott to cancer. Maddie was devastated to lose her best friend. They always had a special bond -- one that transcended the typical father/daughter love that you witness every day. Finally, Maddie is at the age where this dream of studying abroad is close enough to touch. Although Scott is not here to plan this new endeavor with her, she plans to do this in honor of him, the one who inspired her to be the best person she could be. I know that Maddie is more than ready and fit to pursue this craving for adventure, and I'm so proud to say that my daughter is on to the biggest and most important adventure of her life: A gap year in England.
During the winning routine -- 2013 USA National champs!
What's a Gap Year?
Maddie has been interested in taking a gap year since her sophomore year. After LOTS of research, she came to me asking if I thought it was right for her. A gap year is basically the oppurtunity for high school graduates to study abroad prior to their freshman year in college. Maddie found a program that will not only satisfy her dreams of traveling, but will also fulfill credits for college. This program is called ISA (international studies abroad) and features several options for students looking to study abroad. Of all the amazing countries that Maddie could have chosen, she settled on the one she's been dreaming about since she was a little girl; she picked one of the countries her father visited when he experienced studies abroad in college. This donation system has been put in place so that we can make that dream a reality for my very deserving little girl.
Doing what she loves -- exploring the unknown!
More Information About the Trip...
Since a gap year takes place before a student enters college, Maddie has chosen the Fall of 2015 session of ISA gap year. After she graduates from Brea Olinda HS in June of 2015, Maddie will prepare for her studies in England which, although the dates aren't set yet, will likely begin in early September and conclude in mid December. ISA provides courses at the University of Roehampton as well as excursions, cultural activites, and other exciting features to further Maddie's experience in England.
On her Bat Mitzvah day with daddy.
With so much love,
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