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Saint Norbert College to offer credit for volunteerism for year

DE PERE, WI (WTAQ) - Saint Norbert College in De Pere is one of the first in the nation to develop a program that gives students credit for volunteering for a year, before they start on campus. 

Saint Norbert is working with the Good News Project, a humanitarian non-profit group, on creating a formal "gap year" -- the time after a student graduates from high school, and before the start of college. 

European students often have "gap years" in which they're encouraged to travel or pursue personal interests.  The idea is to arrive at college more refreshed, and more focused on their studies. 

Saint Norbert president Thomas Kunkel tells Gannett Wisconsin Media that its one-year gap would provide quote, "a journey of self-discovery, even as it helps prepare these students for college and work-life." 

As part of the program, Saint Norbert's income freshmen could take leadership course, volunteer with service groups, and then six weeks on an international service project with the "Good News" organization. 

It offers humanitarian aid to several Caribbean countries.  Students would earn college credits for their work.