Switzerland is the world’s most innovative country according to the 2020 edition of the Global Innovation Index, followed by Sweden. The United States comes in third.

But what is the Global Innovation Index (GII), really? It ranks the economies of 129 countries according to 80 indicators, ranging from research and development investments to patent and trademark applications. Lately, more trendy indicators have been added, like the number of mobile app creations and the amount of tech exports. It is interesting to note that twelve of the top 20 countries are in Europe, with the United States having a very strong third place.

The obvious way to tap into this wealth is to live in Switzerland or to spend a few years in the country, either as a student or as a researcher. Franklin University Switzerland is a great place to be. It combines a liberal arts foundation with trend-setting subjects like finance and international relations, blending Swissness with typical American virtues like creativity, pragmatism and the capability to execute.

What if one does not have a lifetime, or three years? There is actually a way to squeeze the best ingredients into just one semester: by signing up for the Franklin Gap Year program. Summarizing it in one line, it’s a combination of multicultural learning experiences and life-enriching skills like quantitative reasoning, sustainability and social justice. And the great social glue: languages, languages, languages.

The Gap Year program is a great opportunity that can figure into various stages of your academic development. It will propel you forward, to the point that another name to describe it could be “leap year.”