“My G.A.P. semester was an opportunity to broaden my horizons and get a taste of the real world, which helped me enter Babson really motivated and confident.”
Closing the Gap Between Ambition and Action
Hanson Grant ’16 / Saratoga Springs, New York
“When I was 18, I left my home in upstate New York and drove across the country to California. I spent four months there, first as a room keeper at Yosemite National Park and then as a ski and snowboard instructor at Squaw Valley Ski Resort in Lake Tahoe.
“It wasn’t a random decision though—I was taking advantage of Babson’s G.A.P. (Grow. Achieve. Prepare.) program. G.A.P. allowed me to start classes in January while staying on track to graduate in four years.
“My G.A.P. semester was an opportunity to broaden my horizons and get a taste of the real world, which helped me enter Babson really motivated and confident. That time spent away, free from any expectations, helped me define my sense of self and learn how to exert self-discipline. By the time I started as a first-year in January, I had already been a leader and a teacher out West, and I was ready to take advantage of everything Babson had to offer.
“The biggest reason Babson appealed to me was its reputation as a top school for entrepreneurs. I ran my own custom T-shirt company in high school, selling to clubs, students, and organizations, and I loved the idea of being my own boss. However, when I was the co-CEO of my Foundations of Management and Entrepreneurship business, EyeCare for Boston, I also learned to work in a team and adapt to the different personalities involved, delegating responsibility when I understood that it was best for our company. Just like being on my own during my G.A.P. semester helped me understand myself, being at Babson has given me insight into what inspires and motivates others.
“Before I first came to campus, I wasn’t sure what to expect as someone starting college a semester later, but I quickly realized Babson was the place for me. It just felt like home, and a major reason for that is all the campus organizations I’m a part of. I’m involved in O.N.E. Tower, the Babson Outdoor Association, and intramural sports, in addition to being a resident assistant (RA).
“I’ve met so many diverse people through these groups, but my closest friends are still those who did G.A.P. with me. This is why I started GAP Club, to help smooth the transition for future G.A.P. students integrating into Babson. My G.A.P classmates have helped this year’s G.A.P. class feel more welcome by assisting with orientation and hanging out with them. We’re also setting up a mentor/mentee system so future GAPs can feel comfortable before they even set foot on campus.”