How Can Students Effectively Use Their Summers?

A common advice for underclassmen this time of year from seniors is, “Start preparing for it early.”

Take this advice to heart, underclassmen.

For students who seek experience in a specific field or the working field itself, there are many available opportunities that you cannot miss!

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For starters, students can take advantage of the Backpacks To Briefcases (B2B) meetings that are available during lunch periods, as they provide useful information for the many students who don’t have a good idea of what career or field they want to pursue and for students who may have a good idea of the major they intend to study. Asking questions and getting advice or a realistic idea of what the future holds for you is a great idea – especially with something as important as your career. B2Bs can also give you an idea of what type of schedule you may have as a clinical psychiatrist or established attorney. Perhaps you may find that being a teacher requires a lot more patience than you thought, or that you might not enjoy the lifestyle a typical dentist may live. It’s always a good idea to explore before tying yourself down to one career path. For more information on B2Bs, you can see Mr. Levine in the Room 139.

Secondly, summer is a great time to get involved in some activities without pressuring yourself to maintain academics and extracurricular activities. For example, many students take advantage of the school summer programs, the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) and Ladders for Leaders, that allow students to gain work experience. These opportunities are limited to a certain number of students via lottery, which means that a seat is not guaranteed. However, there are other external programs that students can apply to if they are not selected for the school programs.

Other great opportunities include extensive programs designed for students like you: involved and eager students wanting to learn and experience a specific field. There are an incredible amount of available programs, and a great source for finding some of these programs can be your teachers! Otherwise, a little internet research can also help you find a school or organization offering opportunities for students to get involved.

Another opportunity can be in research. By reaching out to school professors or even by talking to some of your school teachers, you can find places to gain experience through lab work, research, and other involvements. Of course, internships are also a great source for experience, even if the work involves simple shadowing or paperwork. Learning about the job by watching the experts work is a great source of information that confirms your passion for a specific line of work. SERP is also a notable opportunity for students interested in research during the school year.

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These experiences are clearly wonderful opportunities for learning, but they are also great for improving social skills or communication, which means the experience can go a long way to prepare you for your future as part of the workforce even if the working experience is not specifically in your line of future career interests. Networking is a great advantage of working as well, and having connections will never hurt, especially making connections with professors capable of giving you a recommendation for college.

Lastly, don’t forget to check your school email, because any available opportunities may be shared with students by email. Activities like Science Olympiad, MakerSpace, Newspaper Committee, and Literary Magazine can also help develop interests during the school year, so check them out!


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