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A Realistic Summer Bucket List for the Average (Broke) College Student

Remember what it was like being in elementary school on summer vacation? August would roll around and you would be so bored, ready to go back to school. It was a much simpler time back then. Now that we are much older we can fully appreciate summer vacation. However, in college, it’s not really much of a break, even though it’s a month longer. That’s the hard part about growing up.

Summer bucket lists are always nice but actually crossing things off of it is challenging when you are working 40 hour weeks and still only have 12 dollars to your name. Here’s a more realistic summer bucket list so you can make the most of summer 2019.

Make $$$

Tis’ the season for internships and working full-time. This is a great time to start saving! If you’re internship is unpaid, well good luck Charlie.

Have a beach day

Work hard, play harder. If you have a day off or have the weekend free, take a trip to the beach! If you’re staying in Michigan this summer, visiting one of the Great Lakes is definitely a must.  

Hang out with old friends from high school

If you’re going home for the summer, this is a great time to catch up with some old friends!  It’s so hard to keep up with everyone’s lives when you can barely keep up with your own. Facetime just isn’t the same as being able to chat in person.

Travel somewhere new

Travel doesn’t have to be expensive. Take a road trip with some friends or family and stay in an airbnb for a night or maybe even camp out!

Read a book

Think about it. Even though you are working more, you don’t have class, homework, or extracurriculars on top of that. Take some time to actually read for fun!  

Have a bonfire

Again, another low-cost item on the list. The only funds you might need are for some s’mores supplies. Seriously, some of my favorite summer nights started with a simple bonfire and country music.

Go social media-free for a week

Stop comparing your summer vacation to others!  Realize that people only post when they’re having fun. Chances are they are probably working just as much as you are. Going social media-free for a week will make you feel less left out.   

Create healthy habits

Start eating healthier. Start training for that marathon. Start a bullet journal! Seriously, do whatever you need to create a better lifestyle for yourself that you can carry on throughout the academic year too.  

Go to a concert/music festival

Of course this can be quite a bit pricier, but if you’re working non-stop you deserve to treat yourself. Often time there are smaller festivals with general admission tickets starting at only $30, and you can still catch one or two big headliners. Check out this website for a list of some festivals coming to Michigan this summer!


Catch up on some much needed sleep and de-stress

Last but not least, sleep. Honey, trust me. You need it.

Hi there! My name is Kara and I am originally from Freeland, Michigan, a tiny town in the Mid-Michigan area. I am a junior here at Central Michigan University and I am pursuing a degree in Advertising and Multi-Media Design. I have a passion for art, fashion, and music so I hope to one day work in one of these industries. My dream is to live in Chicago or New York! On campus, I am involved with the Honors Program, Advertising Student Development Forum (ASDF), the Beta Phi chapter of the Delta Phi Epsilon sorority, and am now serving as the co-correspondent and editor-in-chief of the C-Mich chapter of Her Campus. I am excited to take on this role and be working with our team throughout this journey! I absolutely love Her Campus and everything that it stands for. It is not only important to empower women, but important to empower people of all sexualities, genders, races, religious beliefs, etc. A fun fact about me is that I love to roller blade and I spent over a month in Thailand this past summer!
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