When I was 15 and a Sophomore in high school, I wanted out. I didn’t have many friends and I always felt like a goofy outcast. I just couldn’t visualize any future in my small New York suburb high school. And I always thought to myself, “I never signed up for this, so why the hell am I here?”
So I would dream away math classes studying the miniature world map found in my homework organizer. I envisioned the countless different lives other 15 year olds where living around the world. I craved the possibilities inherent to travel but I didn’t think I had any options. A year later, I ran away from home.
If I had known then all the possibilities I know today, there’s a good chance I would have never run away in the first place.
There are countless high school exchanges, summer abroad programs, volunteer opportunities and even high schools on ships that travel around the world to choose from.
If you’re in high school, feel the same way I did, and are ready to ‘run away’, the following guide is for you.
The Pros & Cons Of ‘Running Away’ During High School
Before you ‘run away’ during high school, below are a few of the pros and cons you should consider.
1) Whichever program you choose, your experience abroad will undoubtedly contribute to your future. Many programs offer credit and even if they don’t, colleges still look highly upon students who forge their own path and travel abroad.
2) If you run away with a program instead of on your own, you’ll get to meet and travel with a group of likeminded people and probably make friends for life.
3) You won’t worry your friends and family to death.
4) You’ll get the chance to explore the world away from the pressures of home.
1) You won’t be completely free as you’ll have to abide by some program restrictions.
2) You’ll miss out on regular high school experience i.e/Prom
3) Some of these programs can be expensive and will put you and your parents into debt. Check out, Scholarship Opportunities For High School Students.
If you ask me, the choice is simple. If you can find the money, then you should go for it. Even if you can’t, you should try and save up, appeal to your relatives, find scholarships and make it happen. There is no better education for the mind and soul than travel. And there’s nothing more enlightening and perspective altering than traveling when you’re young.
Let Me Know What You Think!
Jessica Festa says
I love this post. So funny because Chris always told me you guys were friends in high school but you were never there for long because you were always running away ;) Looks like travel was meant to be for you!
The Runaway Guide says
Thanks!!! Haha, yup, it’s true :) Hope this guide helps some kids like me. That summer camp in Spain looks amazing! I wish I could still do that.
Hey man! Great post! I’m doing something similar myself at the moment, travelling in high school, except I go to an online school! It’s great, you wake up at 10, get on to your computer, sit in class for 3 hours (ish) and then homework, and then you’re as free as an albatross on a summer breeze. It’s a bit restrictive on when you can travel, normally I only move somewhere on a short holiday, but it’s entirely doable to hop on a plane on Friday, get across the planet by Sunday and not miss any school. I’ve done it. It’s a really really good system when you want to travel, although you do miss out on some things, as you said.
Anyway keep up the good work man!
The Runaway Guide says
Hey Joe, that’s awesome! I hadn’t thought about an online high school. Glad that’s working out for you!