It’s been a long, tough school year, and, while you should be relieved that the days of sleeping in and binging on Netflix all day are near, you should also be brainstorming ways to make the most of your summer. Don’t get me wrong - I love lazy summers as much as the next teen! As a college-bound student however, I know that taking advantage of the summer is critical to achieving success come college admission time for the upcoming school year. Here are some stellar ways to make the most of your summer.
1. College Tours
It doesn’t matter if you’re an incoming freshman or incoming senior, college tours are among the best ways to make the most of your summer! It’s important to put colleges on your radar now, and gauge which schools are the best fits for you. Visit a wide variety of college campuses, that way you can weed out the good fits from the bad long before you need to make any major decisions regarding college entrance.
2. Volunteer Work
Summer is a great time to rack up volunteer hours! All of those lazy mornings are splendid, but making a difference in your community is a bit more important. Give yourself a few weeks of a traditional summer vacation, but eventually you should get into the habit of volunteering a few times a week. Check out your local library, animal shelter, hospital, or homeless shelter for volunteer opportunities.
3. College Classes
I know, I know, school just finished! But a great way to make the most of your summer is to take a course at a community college. Many CCs offer classes to high school students, and you should consider taking advantage of them over summer. College courses are a lot different from high school classes, so this can help ease the transition long before you attend college, as well as earn you some valuable college credits!
4. Summer School
If it’s mandatory for you to graduate, of course you should take summer school, but summer school isn’t just for students in danger of losing their diploma. I took summer school to get my Health class requirement out of the way in sophomore year, and I’d recommend that you do the same! Summer school isn’t exactly “fun”, but it goes by quickly enough and makes more room in your schedule for classes you want to take during the school year.
5. Camp Counseling
If you went to summer camp when you were younger and loved it, it’s time to pay your dues to the summer camp world! You can become a camp counselor this summer. You’re sure to have lots of fun, and make great connections both with other counselors and with campers. It will be a great opportunity to polish your leadership skills, which will help you immensely in your future.
6. Summer Job
Summer is also a great time to get a job. Most teens get their first job over summer, so employers will be expecting a wave of applicants. If you can make your application stand out, take whatever job is offered to you that you think you’ll enjoy. You can save up money for college as well as spending throughout the school year, and get used to working before you have to balance work and school at the same time.
7. Try Something New
Since you have so much free time in summer, it’s the best time of the year to try something new! Join a sports team, pick up a new hobby, learn to play an instrument. Who knows, you could be the next Mozart and not even know it! Talents and skills will be invaluable when the college and scholarship application process comes around, so why not try something new this summer?
Summer is usually a teen’s favorite season, because it means no school! But no school doesn’t necessarily translate into no work... You should still try to make the most of your summer. What will you do this summer that’s both fun and productive?