Already feeling guilty about stealing away to the beach for Spring Break? Don’t. It’s a very short holiday away from school, so you might as well spend it doing something that means something to you. There’s nothing in the world wrong with having a good time, especially when school is so stressful.
Bottom line: you need a break, and it’s time to get the break that you deserve. But what about the summer? You have a lot more time, and that means that you can plan something really meaningful.
Want our advice? Do something productive. We mean that; it’s time to do something that will make you feel good when you look back years from now. You don’t want to rush into just any activity for the sake of being busy, as this defeats the purpose entirely. Simply put, you really need to make sure that you’re making your summer break as productive as you possibly can.
There are a few ways to get this done.
The Internship Path
If you want something that’s going to look good on your resume, an internship is really the best way to go. You can indeed get jobs after graduation without an internship, but we don’t recommend this at all. Why? It’s simple. Without an internship, future employers really can’t tell what type of experience you have in the field. Yes, classroom knowledge counts for a lot. But there is something to be said about the hands on experience. You will learn far more from a good internship than you will in the classroom. Your coworkers over the summer will do whatever they can to help speed up the learning process, because they truly want you to be as sharp as possible.
There’s always a company looking for interns. The way to get an internship is to check the career office, and to also be proactive on your end. Numerous networking opportunities exist for students because they know you need more internship time. A short internship could be the best thing that you do all summer long…if you do it right.
That’s right: if you want to pull off a great internship, you have to be strategic about it. Don’t just clock in and do nothing at work. This is the time to ask all of the questions that you’ve really wanted to know about the field. It’s also the time to be humble. Yes, being an intern means that you’ll most likely get all of the jobs that other people do not wish to do. This is quite the drag, but it’s understandable. In fact, most of your coworkers of the summer will probably share stories of their internships. There’s a phase where you just do all of the yucky work at the company, until you can earn the respect you need from your peers. Remember that respect really isn’t something that’s given; it’s earned.
The Volunteer Path
If you don’t need to bring in extra cash, you can always go with a volunteer opportunity. These are a little easier to get than internships, since there’s no money involved. Still, there are some top notch volunteering projects that everyone wants. Crafting the right essay and being sincere can go a long way to getting a great volunteering experience that you’ll remember for a long time.
There’s really no right or wrong path here. Some people will go for the internship, while other people will decide that they’re better off going with the volunteering path. It’s always completely up to you, so don’t give up. Good luck!