7 Things You Can Do Over Your Summer Break: Career Prospects Edition

It’s never too early to bring preparations for your career, so consider using your summer break to get a headstart!
Sarah Si
Sarah Si
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After an academic year jam-packed with reading, assignments, group projects and exams, your summer holidays are finally here!

After the initial high of hitting the holidays, you realise that this might just be one of your final summer breaks before you graduate and hit the workforce, so you might want to use it wisely!

Of course, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t engage in fun stuff, like café-hopping with friends or meeting up for a round of darts, especially now that it’s much easier to meet up as we enter the endemic phase.

But the fact remains that summer break is the best time to prepare and get a headstart on your job hunt, which you may not otherwise have time for during the school term.

Here’s a short list that you can use for inspiration to get ready for your foray into the working world!

1. Learn a new language

Today’s interconnected world means that all sorts of communication skills are vital, from the ability to speak several languages to cultural awareness. So, since you have the time and opportunity, why not pick up a new language?

Not only can it be a fun experience, but this will definitely be a mark in your favour when you begin sending out applications at the beginning of your job hunt. Singapore is both an international and regional business hub for companies – the World Bank listed countries like China, the United States and Indonesia as top import partners – so having knowledge of a third language can open the door to more career opportunities!

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2. Travel

Singapore’s relaxed regulations mean that travel is now back in the cards! While it’s definitely a good time to treat yourself to that vacation you’ve been putting off for years – just make sure your passport hasn’t shot past its renewal date – travel’s also good for your future career prospects.

You’ll get to experience different cultures, and get exposed to a variety of activities that may help you in the long run. For example, being fully immersed in another country may help you learn a new language (see above). And the adaptability you’ll surely pick up, if you accidentally stumble into a new situation and make your way out of it, is a highly sought-after skill among employers.

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3. Get a professional-looking wardrobe

Just because your job hunt isn’t starting so soon doesn’t mean that you can’t get ready for it now. While you can recycle the blazers and suits you used for class presentations for job interviews, you likely don’t have enough to get you through the week as a working professional.

Professional clothes don’t have to be expensive, so there’s no need to break the bank. G2000 and H&M are popular picks among students entering the working world due to their affordable prices. Alternatively, if you prefer loose clothing that’s still on the professional side, you can try Uniqlo.

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4. Take up a temp job

Taking the chance to work over your summer break is a good way to help you pick up and build valuable transferable skills, like interpersonal and communication skills, time management skills and resilience. You’ll even be able to add the work experience to your resume later, especially if the job is related to the industry you want to work in!

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5. Volunteer, or pick up a new hobby

You might’ve heard this time and time again, but volunteering or pursuing your hobbies and interests can help you pick up skills and experience that might prove crucial in landing your role of choice.

Moreover, if you’re able to show how your recruiter how you’re the skills you picked up over the course of your volunteer work or hobby are relevant to the role you’re gunning for, you’ll have an edge over other candidates!

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6. Finish what you started (and abandoned halfway)

Let’s be frank: finishing what you started is much harder than starting something new, especially if you’ve left them for a good while. But there are numerous benefits to seeing through projects that you started, from that sense of accomplishment you get on the completion of a project, to proving to yourself that you can persevere through something, even though you might have lost interest in it.

So, if you have any abandoned projects, summer break might be the perfect time to revive and complete them!

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7. Take care of your mental and physical health

After an academic year’s worth of intense studying and project work, take the time off to take care of your physical and mental health. On the physical side, you’ll likely first hit your bed and clear up the sleep debt you’ve accumulated over the crunch at the end of the semester.

But after that, look out for your mental health, too. Catch up with friends and family, or indulge in some alone time if you need it. If you took up a temp job (see above), you can also think about using your paycheque and treating yourself. But in the middle of it all, don’t forget to get out of your house and breathe in some fresh air!

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Summer break is one of the best times to think about your job prospects and get ready for your job hunt, so use it wisely instead of leaving your preparations to the last minute!