Jane is a professional coach with a lot of knowledge about the various (study) opportunities in South Korea and Australia.  She has the ability to translate your wishes and questions into a suitable and comprehensive proposal for a gap year or a study abroad.

Jane is accurate and has a very personal approach in her engagement. She has already developed tailor made solutions for several students at the Gemeentelijk Gymnasium. And she has done this to the great satisfaction of the students and parents.

- Marya de Haas, Dean, Gemeentelijk Gymnasium Hilversum, December 2015

Jane is an intelligent and friendly person to work with, for both students and their parents. She asks the right questions and requires you to think about your own answers. As a result, you discover more and more what you really want. She is sensitive, also for unspoken signals for which she handles with understanding and care. She also sends you home with assignments to work on so that you can develop your direction at your own pace.

If, based on her experience she believes you have to become active or that your approach is not the right one, she will not hesitate in a polite way to address this. She also helps you to find the right information. In addition, she has many useful connections and experiences overseas. What more do you want?

-Ellen, Parent, October 2015

I am writing this from Busan, Korea, where I would have not been without Jane’s help. We met Jane through my old high school Dean. Although Jane had no prior experience with a plan like mine Jane had the skillset to set up a blueprint to turn my plan into reality. She was not afraid to speak her mind or put me to work. She had the connections I would have never been able to get myself and as I said I would have never been here where I am today if it was not for her help. Thanks again Jane for all you have done for me and the nice conversations!

-Iza, Busan, South Korea , October 2015

We’re very happy with Jane helping us in realizing the dream of a wonderful gapyear for our son in Australia. She explores the wishes of Wouter very thoroughly and is capable to transfer them into realistic plans by means of her knowledge of Australia and her contacts within the continent. As such she has helped Wouter finding the perfect environment for him to achieve his goal. Jane is very efficient without Wouter losing his responsibility to take part in the process. She is a pleasant person to work with.

-Koo and Iris, Parents, 10 December 2015

The reason for me to take one year off was very simple; I did not want to stay my whole life in the rhythm of going to school, making my homework, getting some good grades, going to sleep and do it all over again. But I could only imagine myself traveling and do something totally different in two moments in life; in between high school and “college time” and in between college time and the start of a working career. In my opinion these periods are the ones, in which someone has very little stress, since there is no pressure of certain obligations and expectations.

My parents only approved a “gap year” if I would learn something in it. My objective in these twelve months, is learning about the way hockey is played in Australia, cause my dream is to be a professional hockeytrainer in the future. So I will use the upcoming year to see how much I can learn and how far I can come in this ambition.

Jane’s part is enormous in making this year come true; she uses her contacts very well and she has even arranged an internship for six months with an ex-coach of the Australian hockey team and formal Olympian for me. Jane is also very good in finding out what your true ambitious and goals are. Before I realised what I wanted to achieve in Australia, Jane made a perfect plan from some incoherent fantasizing from my side.

-Wouter, 17 December 2015

'I am so grateful that Jane helped me with the planning of my gap year. I met her at high school where she gave information for everyone who was interested in a gap year and studying abroad. By the time I met her, I had already decided to travel to Thailand, Australia and New Zealand after my exams and wanted to keep the idea of studying abroad open. Some weeks later I met up with Jane for a tea and we talked about travelling, studying and how many opportunities lie ahead waiting to be taken. During the conversation I realized that I had decided to take a gap year because I wanted to see more of the world, to be free to do what comes on my path, to meet inspiring people and, how one of my friends always says, to "live the adventure".

'When in high school, English was always a struggle, but it was my goal to improve it. I told Jane that I thought about doing an English course but I had no idea where to start: where do I this kind of experience, can I do it on a tourist visa, and is it not too expensive for a backpacker? Jane did research and told me about different courses and compared them to make clear what the advantages of each course were. Decisions can be difficult but with Jane's help it was so clear and the decision-making became much easier. Jane always knew or found the answers to questions my parents and I had; she went the extra mile to call companies and send email to find whatever I needed.

(Most of my travelling would be without a set schedule, but one thing I decided to plan: a 5 week English course at TAFE Ultimo in the heart of Sydney (starting January 2016). Right now I am looking forward to mixing in with the international student environment and to be in a classroom setting and atmosphere for a while. It sounds as the perfect combination of travelling and studying.

Jane is an extremely kind-hearted woman, incredibly knowledgeable, eager to help and is an inspiration to talk with. I often think back to that afternoon tea and the conversations we had. How lucky am I to have had Jane's advice, without her I would've never able to achieve this experience that I'd been dreaming of.')

- Tessa, 14 December 2015

Hi my name is Lidewij and at the moment I'm studying Korean at EWHA University in Seoul, South Korea as a part of my Gap Year. I've been here for three months now, I'm learning and experiencing new things every day and I must say, I believe that I've fallen in love with this country.

I was introduced to Jane by my school counsellor after me expressing my thoughts about taking a Gap Year in South Korea. Even though not a lot of people had wanted to go to this particular country before, Jane still knew exactly what to do, say and how to help me. Over the course of a couple of months my parents and I met up with Jane a few times to discuss my progress on picking a university, applying and South Korean culture in general, we also had a lot of contact through email and I even received a couple of books and maps of Seoul to learn even more about the city and its rich history.

This all helped me so much, and I think that without Jane's consistent support and patience for all my and my parents' questions I wouldn't have stepped on the plane as confident as I did back in September. (Lidewij, studying Korean at EWHA University, Seoul) 14 December 2015

-Lidewij, 13 December 2015

‘Having a slightly longer study summer break than the usual, I decided to broaden my horizon by exploring one of the many wonders of the world that Sydney is. Not having any contacts there, it would have been difficult to stay there hadn’t I had the aid that Jane provided. Not only did she help me find a roof to sleep under she also helped me settle in quickly and smoothly, and before I new it, I was feeling at home on the other side of the planet.

Jane proved to be a key factor in this process, not only because of her knowledge of the area and people, but also by bringing me into contact with the right people. This allowed me to play Hockey at premier league level at Sydney University, and at the same time got me in touch with many other students and people like me, which I can now gladly call friends.

In short, Sydney was an unforgettable experience, I learned a lot about myself and the country, made good friends and amazing trips, all whilst still being productive (internship and hockey). This combination of fun and work is exactly what made it so memorable and enjoyable, giving me enough reasons to head back some time in the future (its Australia!!).

I’m very grateful to Jane as she helped me turn this little seed of an idea into the heavenly experience I have had, and I’m sure she’ll do the same for you!

Nog hartstikke bedankt!
-Thijs van Pelt, October 2016


Jane bedankt voor je hulp en ondersteuning bij het vinden van een club voor ons hockey-avontuur in Australië! Nadat een teamgenootje en ik op zoek waren naar een club om voor te spelen in Australië zijn wij in contact gekomen met Jane. Wij mochten bij haar in Hilversum langskomen om over de mogelijkheden te praten.

Jane heeft ons geholpen met verschillende contactgegevens in Australië. Aangezien wij eigenlijk nog heel weinig wisten van de cultuur en competitie rondom hockey in Australië was het erg fijn dat ze ons daarbij wilde helpen. Wij zijn erg gastvrij ontvangen in Hilversum en natuurlijk een stuk wijzer vertrokken.

Nogmaals bedankt voor je goede zorgen!

-Wendela van Dedem (Keeper, Hurley Dames 1, Amsterdam), Decembe 2016


Thank you very much Jane for all the help regarding my gap year planning. A trip to Australia at this age never seemed realistic until i came across Great Gap Year, where you really opened my eyes to new opportunities for both my personal experience and professional career. I would highly recommend Great Gap Year to others attempting to travel to Australia and/or South Korea, as your kind hearted personality and ambitious contribution to making my dream a reality have brought me a lot further than i would have been able to come on my own. All your help was greatly appreciated!

-Mikkel Leseberg, July 2017


Thank you Jane for your help regarding my exchange to Seoul in South Korea! I have learned a lot from you about the Korean culture and about the country itself, which is very useful when I arrive in Seoul. I really appreciate your enthusiastic contribution and I hope we keep in touch!

– Daan Straatman, August 2017


Great Gap Year highly recommended
We found Great Gap Year through our friends and contacts in Bussum area where we live when looking for guidance on how our daughter Anna (18 ) could spend four months in Sydney, Australia. Jane van Vessem did a great job in getting Anna’s  trip organised which included a Sydney University English course where Jane has good contacts and knows her way around. She also found very nice accommodation at a great location in Sydney, which she managed to check out herself when she visited Sydney. As Jane has been a Sydney native in the past she knows the country and the city well. In summary, we can highly recommend Jane if you are looking for guidance, advise about a gap year in Australia for your son or daughter. Jane is pleasant and quick in getting back to you and provides excellent practical information concerning travel tips, visa requirements etc.
– Ludo Mees, August 2018