How Will You Spend Your Summer?

 In College, College Preparation

For most students, there are only a few weeks left to the end of yet another school year, vacation is around the corner, and that long awaited break is near, but just because school’s out for summer doesn’t mean the work stops there, especially if you’re planning on attending college in the future. You’ve put in the work all school year to master that perfect GPA, so why not take some time off? Well, while you might rank at the top of your class with an SAT score to die for, and enough extracurricular activities to last a lifetime, surprisingly, it’s going to take a little more than that to compete with the thousands of other applicants just like you.

How you spend your summer months matter. For many colleges, what you do during your off time demonstrates how you choose to spend time freely given.

The most obvious choice would be to snag a summer internship as it is a great way to gain early access and experience into your future career interests, and it looks great on your college application too. Also, consider thinking outside the box and create your own research project that connects to your potential field of study. Not only does this show initiative to take the lead, but it also exemplifies genuine interest and creativity.

Aside from the good grades and extracurriculars, use the summer to highlight your personal qualities. Colleges also want to know the kind of person you are and getting involved in charities or some form of service work really speaks to your character. Service work is a great way to demonstrate acts of selflessness and commitment to others. It lets people know that your heart extends beyond yourself. Choose a project you legitimately care about, but if you can’t find one you’re personally connect to, then start your own.

While there are many students who have the luxury to relax and rejuvenate, there are also countless others who must spend a great deal of their summer break working to support themselves, and often times their families. In this instance, it is a good idea to seek counsel ahead of time from guidance counselors, teachers, mentors, or anyone who might be able to connect you to an employment opportunity that merges your career interests.

Additionally, delegate time to learning something new over the summer and add that to the already impressive list of skills you have in your repertoire, in addition to turning your weakness into strengths by taking classes or joining groups that will help cultivate those skills.

Summer is the perfect time for students to explore options beyond the classroom, whether that’s learning a new trade traveling abroad or interning right in your very own backyard. Whatever you choose to do this summer, choose to use your time wisely! They’re watching.

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