It is never too early to start considering your summer plans. The question of “what are you doing this summer?” is often asked by parents, friends, and teachers of high school students. Now is the time of year when the question starts to come up again. So how do you effectively plan your summer?
Focus on the ‘Why’
Instead of thinking about WHAT you want to do (internship, summer course, volunteer work), it can often be beneficial to think about WHY you want to pursue something.
If you want to take a summer course because your parents are pushing you to have an activity to include on your resume, you probably won’t get as much out of the experience as if you are genuinely interested in the subject area and want to learn more about it.
What are your motivations and how can this experience help you to reach your goals?
This may not be an easy question to answer, and it may take some time. Talk to your family and friends for advice, and explore different ideas by making lists. Summer is a fantastic time to consider doing something you don’t have time for during the academic year and to try something new.
Even though it may be different from what your friends are doing, or it may turn out to be something you do not like, that is okay. Sometimes, experiences that are unusual or have unexpected outcomes are crucial to helping you decide what you do want to focus on in the future (whether than means as a career, or pursuing as an interest).
Don’t forget that as a student, you have 6-8 weeks off in the summer, so it is possible to combine different activities. Maybe you want to relax and travel for a couple of weeks, and then get some exposure of what it is like working in a science lab afterwards. You can do both if you start planning early.
By planning now and investigating options, you can make this summer a meaningful and unforgettable one!