Published: May 3, 2023

Milk and Honey FarmIt’s not too late to take advantage of opportunities to gain professional experience this summer. Even if you don’t have an internship lined up, you can still use your time to expand your skills and enhance your resume. 

Look for opportunities to learn new things, build your network and participate in organized events or activities. You can also work on tasks to help you with your future job or internship search, like updating online profiles, creating a portfolio or writing your resume.

Gain valuable skills

Summer jobs and volunteer opportunities give you a chance to gain valuable skills. No internship? No problem. Students can learn the top skills employers seek through almost any job or volunteer opportunity.

A position as a lifeguard helps develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Or working in a restaurant and keeping customers happy while balancing the needs of kitchen staff requires communication skills. Volunteering at a summer camp requires integrity, responsibility and teamwork. 

The Volunteer Resource Center connects students to service opportunities on campus and in local communities. Explore ways you can give back and build new skills this summer.

Take courses to expand your knowledge

You can take advantage of courses offered during the summer sessions at CU Boulder. Summer sessions allow you to focus on one class, enroll in popular courses and improve your academic standing.

You can also use resources like LinkedIn Learning to earn certifications and learn new skills. Classes on technical skills like SEO or coding may not be requirements for your major, but they can enhance your resume and make you more marketable in your job search.

Learn more about career options

Summer is an excellent time to learn about different industries and career paths. You can do a job simulation to understand your own career goals better. Informational interviews also offer a way to learn more about specific jobs. Schedule time with people who inspire you or have an interesting career. During the informational interview, ask about the necessary skills to pursue that career and suggested classes or experiences that could help position you for success. Forever Buffs Network and the CU Boulder LinkedIn page are the perfect places to find people to interview.

Try gig work

Seek out short-term opportunities over the summer. You can become an independent contractor or pursue freelance or gig work. No matter your study area, gig work lets you gain valuable experience while earning extra cash.

Look for opportunities within your network. For example, you could photograph a friend’s wedding, write articles on topics that interest you or offer your services through a platform like Upwork or Fiverr.

Make the most of your time this summer

It’s not too late to gain skills and experience over the summer. Even if you don’t have an internship or job lined up, you can find creative solutions!

Career Services helps students position themselves for success through workshops, events, training and other resources. You can also meet with a peer career advisor during scheduled office hours or schedule an appointment with a career advisor.