So it’s the end of the semester and all your friends are leaving campus while you stay on for whatever reason–you have an on-campus summer internship, you’re taking summer classes, or even if you’re a townie in a college town. Whatever your situation, try the 5 things listed below and fall will come around before you know it.
1. Connect with others staying back
You can’t be the only one left on campus! Open a Facebook group, find each other on Yik Yak, start a hashtag trend on Twitter; the possibilities using social media are endless. You could come out of it with new friends, or at least have human interaction over the summer (other than your boss or parents). Just remember, summer flings are harder when you’re both going to be on the same campus come fall–doubly so if it’s a small college.
2. Meet the locals
Often we only socialize with people from our college, not only because of proximity, but also because of familiarity; after all, the college is a common factor for you. But meeting people outside our usual comfort zone may be an avenue to new learning experiences and opportunities, and at the very least it will teach you how to get along with people from all walks of life, which are people skills that will help you in the real world.
3. Explore local shops
Furthering your local experience, broaden your horizons past the coffee shop your friends frequent or the late night food place you quench your drunchies at. This could work both ways, whether you are in a city or a college town. Either way, you may discover places you would never have found during the school semester. If you are in a college town, you are also helping local businesses that live by supplying the demands of the college students and then have virtually no income over the school breaks.
4. Take up a hobby
With all of the free time you now have, taking up a hobby in a place with as many readily available resources as your college can be very simple. You can even go online to pick up basics of common activities like playing different instruments. The quad is now empty for you to be “that guy with the guitar” without being yakked about all day, while your picturesque college is the perfect backdrop to test out your photography skills.
Giving back to the community is always a viable option, and when you’re helping the place you are in for four years of your life, it makes the experience a truly worthwhile one. Additionally, if you’re in an organisation that requires a certain number of hours of service per semester, you could finish them now and have more free time during the year.
6. Get a job
While it is sometimes virtually impossible to get a job during the school year, once summer starts, most shops that have students working for them lose many of their regular workers. This is a prime opportunity for you to get jobs that are usually competitive, like the coveted barista spot at the local Starbucks. You will even get a leg up for a position come fall. Even if you are on campus for a summer internship, most internships are unpaid and this will help with your summer expenses, maybe even covering it with employee discounts at food stores. Plus, you will have that extra dough once fall comes around.
7. Go shopping (for collegiate items)
Once all the college students come back to the area in the fall, all the prices at local outlets for simple things like shower curtains soar. Stay ahead of the curve by buying all the goods earlier while the suburbs’ kids clean out their local supermarkets that probably raised their prices because the students went home for summer.
So no matter how far the end of summer feels right now, know that time passes and once syllabus week is over, you’ll long for these days again.