Robin Pendoley joined the gap year community in 2005 as an educator seeking to change the lives of students and address critical global issues. Since that time, he has worked as a leader in this growing education field. In 2007 he co-founded Thinking Beyond Borders, an educational non-profit offering pioneering gap year programs. In addition, Robin is the Co-Director of the USA Gap Year Fairs, helping to build a national series of events bringing students and parents together with gap year program providers. He serves as a founding Board Member of the American Gap Association, a non-profit ensuring US program providers meet high safety and quality standards. Robin also helped lead first-of-its-kind research into the impact of gap years on student development.
Robin earned a B.A. in International Development Studies from UCLA and a Masters in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He has lived and worked abroad extensively, both as a student and an educator. Robin committed eight years to public schools in Los Angeles and Boston. He served as a teacher, administrator, coach, and college access program administrator. Robin’s blog posts on education and social change have been featured on Forbes, Ashoka, and Innovation Excellence.
Born and raised near San Francisco, Robin spends his free time running trails and enjoying time with family and friends. He’s thrilled to share that he recently began coaching the distance runners for the track team at his alma mater, Terra Linda High School.
Students transitioning from high school to college today face challenges previous generations did not. Higher education is a huge investment of money, time, and energy. Gaining real value from that investment requires learning and growth that neither high schools nor colleges are providing. Perhaps more importantly, students are left wanting for experiences that support them in shaping their adult identities and lives to be personally fulfilling and contribute to society. The gap year is providing lessons every student, parent, and educator should consider.