Most people have the year travel before they go to Uni, but what the hell...I hope you make it. You don't mention the Uni you attend. A long time ago when I was a student most universities had sailing clubs...does yours? If so they will have the RYA courses and yes the RYA day skipper
would be most helpful. Again in my salad days when I was a green lad the RYA had two other lesser courses.... Competent crew...team leader then the day skipper. If your UNI has a sailing club, then they will be geared to graduate you through the process.
Where are you located? Are you near the sea or inland lake. The sailing community universally is very acccommodating to those that show a genuine interest in our common sport, therefore I am pretty confident that in the UK any sailing club will welcome you as a new member
and I am equally confident that your offer to crew and learn will be very welcomed and used. Traditionally, British boat owners did not need RYA qualifications to do and go anywhere, and as such sailing clubs had an informal system whereby senior members made sure that new and less experienced sailors/members where brought up to a specific standard. I am sure this still exists on a local level and as such you will achieve a level of competence which will enhance your future opportunities.
Within this forum are many threads which will enable you to understand nearly all aspects of sailing from basics to expert levels. Therefore welcome and enjoy. Some British based member
will no doubt post website and such regarding crewing
opportunities, but if your Uni does not have a club the the RYA wedsite will have a list of clubs within your area.
PS. get yourselves to Venezuela
during your trip and maybe we can add to your experience