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How to Have a Productive Summer This Year

Summer break can be a time of rest and relaxation after the end of a long school year, but the newfound free time without a full schedule of classes can provide many opportunities for personal growth. Here are some suggestions for staying productive over your summer break:

Find a Job

Because of the pandemic, I was left without a job last summer. The pool that I used to work at was closed due to coronavirus restrictions and I had difficulty finding another place to hire me for a seasonal position. Although my previous place of employment closed permanently, I was able to find a job as a lifeguard at a different country club in my area for this upcoming season. Seasonal jobs can be difficult to find because most places want to hire employees for longer than a few months. If you want to work this summer, I recommend that you start looking for a job as soon as possible, so you don’t end up without one like I did last summer.

Take Summer Classes

Although I was unable to work last summer, I used my free time to take summer classes and get ahead on my degree. Most community colleges offer a variety of summer classes for temporary students. These classes are significantly cheaper than the summer classes offered at four year universities, so I strongly recommend taking a class or two to save money and time. I have always been interested in astronomy, but I never would have had time to fit an astronomy class into my schedule during the fall and spring semesters. Taking it over the summer without a full schedule allowed me to put my full effort into a class that interested me.

Find an Internship

Finding a summer internship is a great opportunity to gain experience in your field of study before going into the workforce. Internships look great on resumes and let your future employer know that you have experience in the field.

Volunteer

I volunteered at a local thrift store the summer after my sophomore year of high school. Volunteering at the thrift store was a very rewarding experience because I was able to directly see how I was helping my community. Whether it is working at a local animal shelter or soup kitchen, helping out an organization that you are passionate about can be a valuable life experience.

Travel (safely)

Some of my best memories are from the two international trips I went on the summer after I graduated high school. Although traveling may be more difficult nowadays, it can still be done safely. Traveling may look different this summer, but by maintaining social distancing protocols and avoiding COVID-19 hotspots, you may still be able to explore some unique destinations.

Set Personal Goals

Summer is the perfect time to accomplish goals that you may not have time for during the school year. My personal goal for summer 2021 is to learn how to skateboard. I talked to my friend Maggie—who is a great skateboarder—about this goal, and she has already helped me set out a plan on how to achieve it. Setting a plan and finding others to hold you accountable can help you reach goals that may grow into bigger ones after the summer season is over. 

I'm a journalism student with an emphasis in strategic communication at the University of Missouri. When not writing articles for Her Campus, my hobbies include playing ultimate frisbee and listening to Lil Uzi Vert.
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