Summertime for a college student is weird. You just spent nine months away from home building a community of friends and learning the ropes of a foreign city, and before you know it you’re back eating home-cooked meals and forcing your pets to cuddle with you. You get a job because money is not only savory, but desperately needed for survival. While it’s great spending time with your family and childhood friends, you can no longer spend the hot, sunny days terrorizing the neighborhood on bicycles or splashing endlessly in pools. You go to work and find time for fun after your shift ends. And that’s just part of growing up.
But a lot can happen in three months. You could discover your dream job, learn something new about yourself, make new friends and connections, or learn life lessons. If you achieved one or all of these things, then you spent your summer wisely.
I can speak from personal experience that I’ve had a successful break. Other than working at a county park for the second summer in a row, I was fortunate enough to land an internship with a great business. At Michigan Creative I was introduced to a real-world Business, and I learned so much valuable information. In addition to this, I was helped by an incredible team of professionals who were not only fun to work with, but also very willing to share their knowledge with me. Michigan Creative gave me an insight into marketing that sitting in class can’t, and I’m so grateful they helped to give me such an awesome summer. I now feel confident that I want to pursue Business as a major when I return to school this fall, and marketing is of great interest to me.
Working at the park was also fun, and gave me valuable work experience. This is especially true when it comes to people skills. I witnessed and worked with people from all walks of life, which made me a more mature, well-rounded person (emphasis on the more). In addition to these life lessons, I also picked up a few new tricks. I’m a total wizard at string-trimming now (don’t tell my parents or they’ll make me put it to use), I can tell the difference between a garter snake and a water snake (one you really shouldn’t pick up), and I can drive (and back up) a 14 person van attached to a trailer loaded with a dozen boats. Learning how to operate tractors, dump trucks, and other machinery also gave me a sense of fearlessness, however river spiders the size of my hand kept my ego in check. And finally, stories of haunted bathrooms, wild raccoons, intoxicated customers, and the various items found littered in the park will be enough to consume any campfire time.
So whether you’re working an internship, full-time or part-time job, or even taking a class or two, don’t let your summer go to waste. You’ll have time to hang out with your friends, but as busy, broke college students, we can’t spend our days building forts and playing with “Littlest Pet Shop” toys anymore. And in addition to the whole self-discovery and valuable life lesson stuff or whatever, it’s kind of nice not having a curfew.