The Time is Now


Your Gap Year Consultant

The founder of GapSmart, James "Skip" Burns is a seasoned youth educator with over ten years of experience mentoring young adults through their first big life decisions.  With a passion for helping others realize their full potential and develop leadership skills, Skip has dedicated his career to helping young people chart their own educational and life plans.

As a previous residential instructor for students with disabilities and counselor for first-generation college students, Skip understands the unique circumstances, various interest, and complex choices that each young person faces on their own educational journey.  His past service experiences with AmeriCorps and Bike & Build have made him a firm advocate for experiential learning - the first-hand experience that young people benefit from during gap years.  Through Gap Smart, Skip has helped young adults connection with national and international service programs so that they can each dedicate a year of their life to clarifying personal interests to uncover a productive, fulfilling life, direction.  

A graduate of the Univerity of New Hampshire's Master's in Education program and along-time independent consultant, Skip's knowledge and independence allows him to support each young person's dynamic needs.

Skip currently serves as a Business Communications Instructor for Year Up, where he supports the personal and professional development of urban young adults.  He continues to spend hi off-hours climbing mountings, service, and pursuing adventure where it can be found.