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Making the Most of My Summers as a College Student

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at FSU chapter.

I’ve always thought that summer was the unsung busiest time for college kids. Students try to justify their time “off” from school by finding ways to either boost their resume, life experience or bank account. I am going into my second collegiate summer, and I can attest to how hard it can be to figure out how to spend this time. Here are my top five ways to best occupy your summertime away from university. 


Internships are one of the most common ways that students can show involvement in their preferred field and get a feel for different career choices they may want to explore post-grad. I have spent a summer interning, and it was probably one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I also have friends who have used internships to rule out jobs they thought they would love. Both paid and unpaid, internships can be a great resume booster and experience builder for any college student. 

The trickiest part of any internship is often getting one. Internships, especially highly competitive ones, can be very difficult to get selected for. While there are several places to apply such as Indeed and LinkedIn, in my experience, personal connections have yielded the best opportunities. Even if it’s just somebody you vaguely know or have to be connected to through a friend or family member, it’s always worth exploring if it’s a great opportunity. 


Summer jobs are one way that students refuel their bank accounts before going back to school in the fall. Whether working part-time or full-time, the extra infusion of cash can be very beneficial. Plenty of jobs specifically hire college kids for the summer when they need extra help during their busy season (I always work in restaurants back home during the summer). They’re also a great way to meet new people, get work experience and build your teamwork and personal relationship skills. 


Traveling both abroad and locally is a great way to learn new things, meet new people and immerse yourself in cultures that you may have never had the opportunity to. A lot of schools, Florida State University included, offer study abroad opportunities for students catered towards specific programs and majors. Studying abroad may be expensive, but it can offer invaluable experiences for students that are impossible to get anywhere else. Some students prefer to just travel to these places over the summer on their own, independent from any study program. This can allow them to focus on the country itself and not have to worry about classes. No matter what kind of person you are, there is some kind of trip you can take to broaden your mind and have a great time. I have been lucky enough to travel to many different places both locally and abroad, and I can say with absolute certainty that some of those trips changed who I am for the better. If you’re able to go somewhere over the summer, go anywhere. 

Anything New

I am currently in an era of my life where anything new sounds exciting and worth trying. This summer I plan to get my boating license, take golf lessons and get scuba diving certified. I just want to do it all, anything new and anything I haven’t tried before or don’t know anything about. Even if you pick one thing you have always wanted to try and haven’t had the opportunity to do before, the summer is the perfect time to explore that. Who knows, maybe it will become an important part of your life! Why not try it, right?

Taking Classes

Summer classes are both a Florida State University graduation requirement and a great way to keep your mind sharp during the summer months. This summer will be my first time taking a class, and I’m so excited to have something keeping me focused on my major during the time off. Even if you aren’t taking a university-approved class, there are so many random online courses designed to teach you something new (some favorites that I have seen include poker, the science of cooking and even dog psychology). If you have any niche interests, chances are there’s an interesting class out there that you can take!

Regardless of how you plan to spend this summer (in addition to some of the things above, I also foresee myself spending a lot of time lying on the beach and reading Emily Henry novels over and over again), it’s a great time to take a break from the chaos of the fall and spring semesters and just self-reflect. Do as much (or as little) as you want because the fall semester is just around the corner!

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Dara Cadzow is a Junior at Florida State University from St. Petersburg, Florida. This is her third semester writing for Her Campus!