5 Things Every Rising Senior Should Do This Summer
College juniors are excited that the academic year is finally coming to an end. In many ways, college is almost over but there is still a lot to do before graduation. Additionally, once college is officially over students will need to start looking for jobs and adjust to a professional lifestyle. There are some things students can do the summer between their junior and senior year to make the last year of college and the graduation process run smoothly. Unfortunately, students who don’t keep track of graduation requirements and other relevant details may end up being a fifth-year senior at the last minute. It’s better to stay on top of things and plan ahead to have a great final year as a full-time student.
1. Look through transcripts
The first thing rising seniors should do is look through their transcript. Many students find out they are just one or two courses short of graduation, which can prevent them from getting their diploma the following spring. If a student made a miscalculation earlier on, there’s still time to make it right before the start of senior year. One option is to take some elective courses over the summer to get extra units. Another option is to take a heavier load of courses starting in the fall. Most universities have a range of what is considered “full time.” It might be better to take five classes instead of four and still graduate on time. If students are at all confused about this process, they are encouraged to speak with one of the academic advisors who can look through everything and make sure the student is on the right track.
2. Arrange work experience
Rising seniors are also encouraged to arrange some relevant work experience over the summer. This may consist of an internship or a paid position. Either way, it’s a good idea to have something productive listed on a resume the summer before graduation. Students who are overwhelmed with what they have already completed throughout the academic year and would rather just relax should know that many internships are only one or two weeks long but still add to a student’s resume. It’s important to have real life on-the-job experience as well as something impressive to put on paper.
Another great way to beef up that student resume over the summer is to volunteer. Sometimes, jobs within a professional field are simply unavailable to students who have not yet graduated. However, there is almost always a need for a volunteer. This is different from an internship in that students can set a more flexible schedule. For example, if an internship is from 8 to 5 Monday through Friday, that’s when the intern works. Volunteers, however, can say that they’re available Thursdays and Fridays from 2 to 6 p.m., for example. This is a great option for students who need to attend summer classes or need to have a part-time job to make ends meet (READ: 5 Ways to Survive Spring Semester as a Senior).
4. Meet with professors and TAs
It’s a fabulous idea for students to meet with their professors or teaching assistants over the summer or as the term is wrapping up. This doesn’t have to be a formal meeting in the professor’s office; it can be a simple meeting over a cup of coffee on campus. Professors and TAs can be a great resource when it comes to planning an entry-level career search or looking for an internship. Most of them have great connections and knowledge that other people simply don’t possess. Also, meeting with professors gives students an opportunity to ask any additional questions. If nothing else this meeting will let the professor know the student is genuinely interested in their major field of study and will maintain a professional connection for the future (READ: 3 Warning Signs of Senioritis).
5. Arrange and informational interview
Another great thing for rising seniors to do over the summer is arrange an informational interview with somebody in the field they plan to go into. This should not be confused with an official job interview. An informational interview is simply asking someone who is already a seasoned professional to provide some mentoring or advice. This gives students the opportunity to put questions without the pressure of having a full-time job on the line.
Summer is the perfect time to catch-up and get ahead on your schooling. Call us today for information on our Irvine summer tutoring.