It’s almost SUMMER; Time to get our act together.
Summer is fast approaching and the warmth is finally returning to the Frozen Tundra. The ground is thawing and so are our brains. With summer vacation brings newfound freedom for most college students. Although it’s time for rest and relaxation, it also provides great opportunities to further your academic careers or make that final leap towards your future.
Here are a few “To Do” ideas or opportunities to check off during the summer months. First and foremost, get a job or internship. Sadly, there are no free lunches. Make your own money and save it. This will benefit you in the long run. Having the opportunity to make connections and network will pay off when you’re looking for jobs after graduation. Summer internships can be paid or unpaid, and available all over. This means you can stay at home, stay around campus, or even go across the country or abroad for the Summer. Take advantage of all the opportunities!
It is important for college students is to create a budget, especially with the all too familiar looming presence of university debt on the horizon. To combat this you can start by planning out all the bills that need to be paid every month and then allocating money for necessities like groceries and gas. Once your bills are all taken care of and you’ve rationed out your gas and grocery money, be sure to leave a few extra bucks for fun things like dinner with friends or new shoes. Also, don’t forget to budget for emergency money for important things like doctor visits or car repairs.
With your newfound Summer freedom, ask for letters of recommendation. When applying for internships, it’s helpful to have letters of recommendation on hand. Having these letters allows employers to learn more about you as a potential job candidate. A letter from a trusted professor or former employer can help solidify the decision to hire you. Letters of recommendation usually come from previous employers but also come from people you have close working relationships with such as colleagues, clients, professors or vendors.
Capitalize on your time off and take some online courses. If you’re behind on credits, completing summer classes is a great way to help achieve the 120 credit minimum that UWGB and most other accredited four-year colleges and universities require. Summer online classes typically follow a less compromising agenda and syllabus, but they take much less time to complete. For instance, regular, 14-week classes held during the Fall or Spring semesters are condensed into four, six, or eight-week courses. This may mean you have to work at a faster pace, but many of us have the freedom to do so in Summer. Plus it might knock out that pesky class you need that doesn’t fit into your fall schedule.
Volunteering is something that should be on your list year round, but when will there be a better time to make connections and help somebody in need than when you have excess free time this Summer? Volunteering in the field you intend to pursue after college is a huge resume booster, and will help you gain experience that could make you more marketable than the next applicant. Volunteer opportunities are everywhere much like internships. Opportunity can be found near home, campus, or a different city or state.
There a lot of fun things we look forward to doing every Summer, but rarely is “boosting our resumes” the number one thing. We all want to go swimming, get a tan, and have fun without worrying about due dates, but after college, there are no more Summer breaks. Why not prepare for that now? This way you will be a mile ahead of everyone else. Preparing for your future might not seem like Summer fun. If you think about it in the long run though, would you rather have a sunburn for a week or a career for the rest of your life? Choose wisely.
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