(itchrinse) wrote in katimavik,

Questions about the program (prior to applying)

I'm contemplating applying for Katimavik; I'm in my second year of university and this August will be turning 20. It's pretty much a "now or never" situation.

Questions for you guys:
  • Should I, or can I, book a medical appointment now (and book it for, say, mid-March) to speed up my application process? Similarly, can I request a criminal background check (or whatever it's called) now, so that my application will be finished sooner?
  • How far in advance were you notified you were selected? Assuming you weren't a replacement person, did they give you a month's notice, a few weeks, mere days, what?
  • Was it worth (more or less) putting your life on hold for nine months? What did you learn? Why did -you- do it?
  • the pre-registration thing listed 4 departure dates - 2 in September, 2 in October. Does this mean there aren't any January '09 departures at all? I think I'd prefer a January program, 'cause then I'd only miss one semester of classes... Though being in Katimavik for Xmas would be amazing.

    I think I'm blanking out on what else I meant to ask, so I'll edit this when more questions crop up.

    As I mentioned, I'm currently in University. My tuition is being paid for via a student line of credit (yay bank loans), save for 8k I received in OSAP for first year. Because I'm switching programs, it'll be a few years before I graduate. This is relevant because I'll be paying monthly interest while on Katimavik, and thusly lose money in the long run because it'll take me another year to get my degree.

    I currently "own" a rabbit ("own" because I don't believe animals can be owned, even though I bought her from a pet store...), she's adorable, was spayed last month, is 7 months old, and has a huge cage that my dad & I built. Obviously, I'd have to find someone to take care of her while on Katimavik (which links to my Q about advance notification), or find a family to place her with forever and ever. :( (Depends on WWOOFing desires/travel bug).

    My current housing situation is absolutely amazing - close to campus, a grocery store, and my rent is only $210/month + utilities (I live in a cube - floor-to-ceiling height is the width and length of my room). Because I'll be staying here (in Guelph) for the summer, and my lease is May -> May, I'll have signed a lease for while on Katimavik and will need to find someone to sublet. And I'll still be on Katimavik when my lease expires and therefore probably won't be able to keep this place for '09-'10. The lease issue also links to "should I really go on a free program when I have such a cheap rent? It'd be better to have my housing paid for if I had a $450/month rent..."

    There's also stuff about when courses are offered (for English, some are only offered in even numbered years or odd numbered years, or in the fall or winter. it's frustrating).

    I'm not sure what's happening with regards to employment; I miiiight have a chance at landing the Recycling Coordinator position - in which case, I wouldn't be able to go away for 9 months.

    There're some minimal issues about my continuation with belly dancing classes and desires to work with extracurricular on-campus groups (such as re-starting the U of G Lit & English Society in September).

    I'm well aware that these obstacles aren't insurmountable and just make things a bit difficult.

    I was considering Katimavik at the end of grade 12, but wound up getting an early acceptance so I jumped at that chance instead. I kinda wish I'd done Katimavik then, as I think I'd have gotten more out of it, but I'm content with the way my life's played out up till now.

    Why I'm interested in Katimavik:
    To learn to live a low-budget life.
    To learn more french :).
    To see more of Canada - I've never been west of Ontario.
    To try new foods/learn recipes.
    To beef up my resume.
    To learn, in general. Learn from others in the group, learn from my volunteer experiences, learn about my own capabilities, etc.
    To find out what it's like to, essentially, just walk out of my life. See who would keep in touch 'n stuff.

    Why I think it might not be worth it:
  • I'm already rather volunteer-oriented. I volunteer at a radio station, doing fill-ins and hosting my weekly show. If I wasn't taking 6 courses, I'd be doing a heck of a lot more! I want to volunteer at a senior's home, I want to tutor elementary/middle-school students, I want to meet people in my community.
  • I can learn recipes and stuff while sticking around here...
  • Living away from my parents for a year and a half has strengthened my independence and Katimavik wouldn't be as much of an experience with regards to the first-time-being-away-from-home-for-an-extended-duration thing.

    I in part feel that I need to go, because I'm somewhat apathetic about bothering to partake in post-secondary education and because I'm (very slightly) scared of the opportunity--what if I'm not accepted to the program, what if I end up dropping out of the program, what if my placements/group members are crummy--and in being a tad scared, I therefore Should do it, for that whole face-your-fears reason. And I really don't want to, later in my life, regret not having tried or not having done Katimavik.

    Responses are quite sincerely appreciated!

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