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Summer Program or Job Helps You Gain Experience

By Peterson's Staff updated on Wednesday, January 30, 2013

If you're looking for a way to get experience doing something you enjoy or something that may help you in college or your career, consider attending a summer program or getting a summer job during high school.

Summer programs

You can attend a student summer program as a participant, and there are many options to choose from, including volunteering work, mentoring, and studying abroad. There are many resources online to help you search for a summer youth program to attend.

Another option might be to get a job at a summer youth program. These organizations often look for younger counselors or staff members to help out.

Summer job

A lot of teenagers who are anxious to earn extra cash spend their summers in retail or food service since those jobs are plentiful. If you're flipping burgers or helping customers find a special outfit, you might think the only thing you're getting out of the job is a paycheck. Think again. You will be amazed to discover that this type of summer job can provide a rich experience just as a summer program would.

Being employed in these fields will teach you how to get along with demanding (and sometimes downright unpleasant) customers, how to work on a team, and how to handle money and order supplies. Not only do summer jobs teach you life skills, but they also offer ways to explore potential careers. What's more, when you apply to college or for a full-time job after high school graduation, the experience will look good on your application.

Sometimes, summer jobs become the very thing you want to do later in life. Before committing to a college major, summer jobs give you the opportunity to try out many directions. Find out where your interests are and build on what is natural for you. Activities you take for granted provide clues to what you are good at. The environments you prefer provide other hints, too.

Getting a summer job while in high school is the first step in a long line of work experiences to come. And the more experience you have, the better you'll be at getting jobs all your life.

About the Author

Peterson's has more than 40 years of experience in higher education, and the expert staff members here are all ready to leverage their considerable knowledge and experience to help you succeed on your educational journey. We have the information, the know-how, and the tools -- now all we need is you!

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