After a year’s worth of exams, assignments and stress, it’s really nice to be able to wind down for a while. However, many students get too adjusted to summer life and find the transition back to uni very difficult! This two-part series aims to provide some suggestions on how to have a productive summer, whilst resting from the uni life at the same time!...By Kayvon Taee
Plan out your holiday!
I know I have advised planning in a few of my blogs, but it’s because I believe having a good plan is vital for productivity and achievement. As soon as I get my results for this academic year, I start to design a timetable for the summer. I like to begin with reflecting on my experiences throughout the year; how well did this year go, what went well and what didn’t? For instance, if my performance in organic chemistry made my overall grade lower because I didn’t have enough knowledge, then I should consider immersing myself in this topic by watching a couple of lectures every week or doing some light reading to ensure I don’t forget it over the summer.
Consider applying for a summer job
Summer jobs are always useful. Period. Not only you get some extra cash if you are in need, but you can gain invaluable experience, regardless of what sector you work in. Whether you are working in fast food, retail or caring, you will meet new people, develop communication skills and it will allow you to switch off from any worries you might have about your studies too! If you have never worked before, it may be difficult to secure a job but do not be discouraged! As someone studying towards a degree qualification, you will no doubt have good time management and be able to handle high workloads effectively, so be sure to flaunt this on your CV!
Develop your skill set
As much as I love my degree, it does not, unfortunately, offer a chance to develop certain skills. For instance, I really like to become more creative and develop my emotional intelligence as I feel this will give me a new approach to solving problems in not only my assignments but also in the real world too! Luckily, the university and the library offer many courses you can do to develop skills which you wouldn’t have the chance too otherwise! Any student can develop their IT skills over the summer, including earning a qualification in Microsoft Office and learning about OneNote! You can also use this time to plan what skills you want to gain in the next term, as well. The library offers a chance to learn clinical skills if you are applying to medical school, how to use iMovie and various software you can use for presentations! I have personally attended the clinical skills workshop and I can say it’s extremely useful and great to get tips when applying to medical school from a medical student!
Why not try volunteering?
Volunteering is a great way to gain experience, develop skills and is easier to secure than a paid job. Warwick volunteers offer many ongoing projects which you can participate in a variety of sectors, including working in a care home, doing conversation work and many more! If you can find volunteering that isn’t organised by the university, you can even get a bursary to help cover transport costs! If you work hard on your placement, you can even get a certificate for being a star volunteer and it will be great for your CV! Your volunteering job is also great for securing a paid job, as you would have established contacts/connections in the job sector you are working in and they may know others who have vacancies available! Don’t forget to ask them if you can use them as a referee when applying for paid jobs!
The suggestions given here are just at the tip of the iceberg! There are many ways to use your summer effectively and more tips will come soon! I hope you have a great summer and I will be back! This is Kayvon signing off!