If you're still in school, consider taking a stab at a part- or full-time summer job. Though the three-month break might seem like the perfect opportunity to waste away by the pool, building up professional skills early on has been proven effective in leading to long term employment. Seasonal jobs give students a chance to develop job-hunting skills, learn productive work habits and gain financial insights. It probably sounds silly that so much information could be gleaned from spending a few months mowing lawns or working at an ice cream shop, but this type of experience will get you noticed when it's time to join the workforce full time.
While the percentage of young people working summer jobs has decreased over the past decade, employers are now looking to raise those numbers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of young adults ages 16 to 24 increased by more than 17 million jobs over the summer of 2013, showing that the season is a popular one for students to work. Don't miss out on the opportunity to earn experience as soon as possible. Even as the season moves forward, many employers continue to look for workers.
Networking in the summertime
Summer is the perfect time to get out and begin networking, especially for young people hoping to land their first job or internship. Barbecues, golf outings and other summer events are great venues for meeting professionals and making connections. Talk to everyone you meet while out this summer. However, remember these events are also time to blow off steam, so don't be pushy or too forward. Build long-lasting relationships that can become more professional later on.
Turn a summer job into a year round one
If you're a camp counselor you might not be able to swing this one, but many employers will hold onto summer workers into the fall. Even if an employer can't take you on year round after the season's end, odds are they might have a spot for you next summer when they look at hiring again. Some employers will likely need continued help though, and that means you'll keep getting a steady paycheck – there's nothing like maintaining a flow of cold hard cash!
Learn new skills
Summer jobs are a great way to learn basic professional skills such as time management, accounting and customer service. Having tangible examples of these abilities will be a huge asset when it comes time to start job hunting for a career.