GAP YEAR PROGRAM
Policy and Procedures Manual
GAP Year Program Definition
GAP stands for “Global Adventure Pursuit”. It is an adventurous year for 18-25 year old students to
experience the study in theology, missions, and language in a cross-cultural setting.
Campus and Environment
The GAP Year Program is located in a middle class residential area on the southeast edge of the capital
city of San Jose. Churches, restaurants, pharmacies, grocery stores, and a post office are within walking distance.
Downtown San Jose is easily reachable by bus in 20 minutes or by taxi in 10 minutes. It is perched 3,800
feet above sea level in Costa Rica’s broad, mountain-ringed Central Valley and enjoys quite moderate year-round
temperatures. In the rainy season, which stretches from May to December, showers generally occur in the
San Jose blends modern high-rises and sophisticated shops with colorful street vendors, markets, and the
one-story, tin-roofed buildings of past eras. Museums, international and typical restaurants, concerts, and live
theater are just some of the interesting places to visit and things to do. For a “touch of home”, U.S. newspapers
and fast food restaurants are close at hand, and shopping malls are just minutes away.
The Program is situated on an attractive, sloping property with private homes around it and a view of
velvet green mountains to the south. It is a gated property with plenty of security.
The majority of participants in the program will be missionaries preparing for service in Spanish-speaking
communities as church planters, pilots, nurses, seminary professors, administrators, etc. Many other participants
will be accepted who will re-enter the USA after a year to pursue other career objectives. This is a one-year
program, not a semester based program.
Participants are asked to respect the missionary nature and focus of the GAP Year Program and abide by
the high ethical and moral standards for which the program exists. They must be at least 18 years of age with a
letter of recommendation from their pastor with their application form. Medical Insurance is included in the cost
of the Gap Year. Most U.S. insurance companies do not cover international students if the program is not
accredited with a U.S. accreditation association.
Who’s Who of GAP Year
The U.S. Executive Director of the GAP Year Program is Jeff Hackett. Jeff is a missionary
with SCORE International who resides in upstate New York. He is married to Cindy and they have one son and
two daughters. After years of secular employment, God called Jeff into full-time ministry. He served for four
years as a Youth Pastor. From that position, Jeff realized his passion for missions and he and Cindy heeded
God’s call to join SCORE International as missionaries in 2004. As well as his responsibilities with the GAP
Year Program, Jeff trains and travels with short term missionaries to Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic.
The Costa Rica Director of the GAP Year Program is Andrew “Andy” Gordley. Andy and his wife
Tina have served as missionaries with AMF (American Missionary Fellowship) in Lancaster, PA. over the last
several years. Andy grew up in Costa Rica and Panama where his parents are CAM missionaries. Andy
understands both the American and Latino cultures. Andy also started a youth ministry called YouthLink and has
taught at the Lancaster Bible College. Andy & Tina have three young boys; Elijah, Brayden & Jamin.
The Costa Rica Student Life Director of the GAP Year Program is John Lovell. John and his wife
Rebekah have served in Youth ministry at First Baptist Woodstock in GA over the last few years. John graduated
from Georgia State University. John learned leadership through the Army Rangers Special Forces. Both John and
Rebekah have a deep passion for the Lord and a desire for all young people to have that same passion.
Our Costa Rica Administrator is Noel Mata. Noel is a Costa Rican national missionary with SCORE
International. He is married to Mary, also a Costa Rican, and they have three daughters. Noel graduated from
Word of Life Bible Institute in Argentina. He and Mary served for five years with Word of Life Costa Rica and
thirteen years with El Lugar Church, just outside San Jose. In 2006 the Lord guided Noel and Mary to SCORE
International to work with the GAP Year Program in Costa Rica.