Okay, freshmen. You’re most likely wrapping up your first year of college with final exams, projects, and papers. While this past year has been much different than you could have ever imagined, you have come out on the other side stronger, smarter, with a set of experiences that no one can take away. Let’s take a moment to acknowledge and celebrate that. The ‘rona changed a lot of things, but it didn’t cancel everything – you made it to this point. However, what do you do if you find yourself without solid summer plans and it’s the first week of May?
I often share with freshmen something a very smart friend said . . . the summer before college was your last free summer. Going forward, every summer should be designed to move your career forward. If you don’t have a summer internship or research experience, you might feel like you missed the boat on making progress. Worry not, we got you.
One of the things I’ve learned as I’ve grown up is that we can react or we can respond when something happens. Reacting is more of an emotional act that is fueled by your worry, frustration, excitement, etc. I consider responding to be more logical and thoughtful. It is less emotion, which often allow you to take stock are and see the next steps more clearly. When you find yourself without concrete summer plans in May, you can do a few things to move the needle in your direction. So let’s talk summer experiences.
If the goal of each summer during college is to move your career forward, think through what you really enjoy and/or would like to learn more about and consider the following:
Take a free online course (something not associated with a grade) to learn something new
Volunteer for an organization related to your academic interest
Find/Develop a marketable skill that you can advertise in your community
Teach a marketable skill for the public library or a community center
The idea here is to create your own opportunities. If you aren't taking a course during summer school - which may be the right path for you - there are things you can make happen for yourself. You can find these suggestions and a few more in this month’s Top 10 Checklist. The Top 10 lists are sent to freshmen students on the T2T email list each month. If you haven't already, sign up for the T2T email list and you’ll receive the checklist on the 10th of each month. You'll also regularly receive a host of other tips and suggestions designed for your college success.
Let T2T support you and I promise, you’ll be glad you did.