No Internship? No Problem!

You go to Emerson College, so odds are when you think of summer, you’re not thinking about lazy days spent relaxing at the beach or the memories you’ll make with family members and friends. Instead, you’re thinking about resume building: how can I get an internship this summer? And what happens if I don’t find one? That’s when the panic sets in. You’ll then find yourself staring at your laptop screen till all hours of the night, trying to perfect your resume and cover letter. Though it might be scary, I’m here to tell you that there is always something productive you can do with your time over summer break.

I say this even though that panic has already started for me and I’ve applied to maybe five? six? internships so far. But, still, what’s keeping me above water is the thought of how else I can spend my summer break, even if I don’t land that sweet, sweet internship opportunity. For instance, there are a few organizations in my local community that I’d love to spend some time this summer volunteering for. I’d also love to spend the summer focusing on the creative projects I’m eager to begin or finish. If you’re concerned about how you can continue to build your resume, even without a summer internship, don’t stress. It doesn’t matter what exactly you do over your summer break. What matters is that you make the most of the summer holiday.

Need more encouragement? Or just need ideas of how you can actively work to make yourself happier and more employable over break? Then, look no further. Below is a list of ways you can stay proactive over the summer, even if you don’t get the chance to spend your days in an office as an intern.

Get Involved:

As I mentioned above, I’m looking forward to being able to volunteer this summer. Last summer, I volunteered at a historical museum local to me in southeastern Massachusetts. But even if you live in a place that doesn’t have many museums, you will always be able to find great causes that need your help. You can check out community centers, like your local library, that might be in need of volunteers. And many nonprofit groups are also usually in need of volunteer help. Check out Volunteer Match to find volunteer opportunities that are convenient to you.

Hone Your Talents:

Summer is a great time to brush up on the skills you can already claim, as well as learn some new ones. If you want to have a solid resume, it’s important that you also have a solid skillset. Are you desperate to learn how to actually use PhotoShop? Then, spend the summer months mastering that craft. Think about what skills will serve you well in your desired career and try to spend your time off from school developing them. 

A Summer Job:

So, maybe an internship isn’t in the cards for you this summer. But, you can still look for summer job opportunities. There’s the obvious factor that you’ll get paid, but being able to stay busy during the summer is a bonus. It doesn’t hurt to ask around when it comes to finding out what places are hiring, especially if you live in a small enough community. Be mindful of what places are most likely to be looking for seasonal help, though. A retail store is less likely to hire somebody to work only a few months, but a restaurant that gets busy during the summer months might be more willing. 

Prepare for Fall:

The best thing you can do over the summer when you don’t have an internship (and you’d really like to have one in the future) is to work toward getting a fall internship. Many companies will post their internship applications in late spring or early summer and they often have early deadlines. That means for some fall internships, your application might be due in June or even May. It’s important to start looking at internship opportunities now and to start the application process as soon as possible so that you don’t end up missing deadlines. Fall is also the perfect time to apply for internships located near campus if you aren’t in-state during the summer months.

Whatever it is you end up doing this summer, just remember that not getting an internship doesn’t necessarily dictate your future. As long as you have at least another semester left at Emerson, there will be other internship opportunities for you to seek out. So if things don’t go as planned this summer, just get to work and look toward the future with an optimistic mind.


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