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5 Ways to Gain Experience and Upskill Your Summer

Check out free resources and ideas to make your summer the resume-builder you’d hoped for.

This summer doesn’t look the way that any of us imagined—but that doesn’t mean it can’t be a good opportunity to grow. Even if your internship was cancelled or put on hold, there are plenty of ways that your summer can be filled with chances to gain professional experience, expose yourself to career paths you may never have considered before, and interact with experts in their respective fields. Ahead, check out some of the free resources that can make your summer the resume-builder you’d hoped for. 

AT&T’s Summer Learning Academy 

When AT&T read the news stories and saw that almost half of all college students lost their summer internship, one AT&T value came to mind: be there. Having already honored their commitment to this summer’s interns, AT&T realized many more students were still in need—and they knew they could help.

Leaning on AT&T University’s award-winning curriculum, AT&T is launching the AT&T Summer Learning Academy. It’s a free, self-paced online learning “externship” certificate program, designed to support college students looking for something to fill the void. The program curriculum covers both business acumen (touching on areas like corporate finance and project management) as well as personal development (with topics like resume writing and personal brand). The program runs from June 22 to July 20, is open to all college students, takes place in a virtual, on-demand format, and totals 80 hours of instruction. You can register to participate in the externship program through June 12.

The Information’s News Summer School

Aspiring journalists should definitely consider taking advantage of The Information’s special summer program, News Summer School. “Join leaders from across the news business for a free, four-week bootcamp to help you build a career in journalism during these unprecedented times,” describes the publication. “As many internships have gone remote or been rescheduled, we’re offering eight hour-long evening ‘classes’ over the month of July, free of charge and open to anyone interested in building a career in news.” 

Learn a language

Fluency in multiple languages is a huge asset not only in the workforce, but in daily life. The ability to communicate is extremely valuable in any field and profession, so why not spend your summer learning a new language? With apps like Duolingo, Memrise, and Mondly to help build confidence in a range of languages, you’ve got plenty of options—all it takes is a bit of commitment. 

Volunteer projects

With so many worthy causes out there that could use your efforts and attention. Why not volunteer to help out with a project that you’re passionate about? It could mean marketing majors polishing your graphic design skills by creating art for Black Lives Matter marches, or computer science majors helping refine the website for a local nonprofit that does good work in the community. You’ll not only be lending your time, skills, and focus to something good, but it’s also a great way to showcase tangible projects—and your values—in your portfolio and resume.  

Online learning sites

Depending on your professional goals, you might want to polish up your marketing skills, learn to code, or gain knowledge about financial markets. Online learning platforms like Coursera, General Assembly, and Udemy all offer free online courses for whichever skills you’re motivated to learn!

Photo by Ignacio Brosa on Unsplash