What To Do If You Don’t Get a Summer Internship

For a Barnard student one of the scariest things to realize come mid-April is that you have nothing to do after finals in May. But don’t despair! There are plenty of things you can still work out that will keep you from bumming around the house watching trashy TV all summer (unless of course that’s what you want to do!).

This could be your summer

1. Political Campaigns
Whatever your political affiliation every candidate whether it’s for President or school board needs manpower. Get in touch with the local campaign office and offer your services. National or statewide campaigns will often have organized days where you call voters or go knock on doors. Smaller House or local races may offer the opportunity to do more.

2. Animal Shelters
Love animals? Good, call up local shelters and see if they need help playing with or feeding the animals.

3. Soup Kitchens, Food Pantries and various other volunteer services
A lot of these organizations often get huge numbers of volunteers around the holidays but are in desperate need of people the rest of the year. Look up the one closest to you. Other ways you can volunteer: hospitals, hospices, rape crisis centers, making murals, teaching children… and the list goes on. Check out volunteermatch.org if you need more inspiration!

4. Your favorite store
If you want to make money this summer apply for retail jobs, and you might even get a job you can return to over winter break if you get lucky, not to mention a discount on merchandise.

5. Tutoring
For parents fearing their children will lose ground during the summer they may be looking for a charming college student to go over reading, math or a foreign language.

6. Babysitting/Nannying
With young kids out of school for the summer parents will often be looking for some extra help, either for the occasional date night or for during the day.

7. Odd jobs
Put the word out either through your parents friends or via a local website that you’re available to house-sit, pet-sit, plant-sit, pool-sit (yes, this is a thing), whatever.

8. Prep for Fall
This applies particularly for rising seniors. Do research for your thesis or study for the GRE, LSAT, GMAT, or MCAT.

9. Do Something For Your Favorite Cause. 
Join the great American bake sale to stop hunger. Train and raise money to run in a charity 5K. Get in touch and ask how you can help.

Image via City of Oviedo

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3 thoughts on “What To Do If You Don’t Get a Summer Internship

  1. I think you're making these options seem too easy. You can't just sign up to work for a campaign nor can you guarantee that retail stores haven't made their summer hires, in fact most of them hired back in January.

  2. yeah, that's true. none of them are easy to get as a really decent summer position. i had to stay home this summer for family reasons, but hopefully one of these will work out for me. it's encouraging to have so many ideas to work off of, though.

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