Summer can be one of the best times for students to take their learning outside of the classroom. Students can dedicate time to learning a new skill, gaining hands-on experience, or building relationships to learn more about their future career path. One field that has become increasingly popular for both high school students and adults is entrepreneurship. Here is how business majors can stay sharp during the summer and practice their skills.
Take A MOOC Course
Free online courses can be a low-risk way for students to get their feet wet in a certain field. Many of the Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) courses on sites like Coursera or edX are taught by prestigious companies or universities like Harvard University, University of Pennsylvania, or Duke University. Courses like “Business Strategy” or “Use Canva to Create Social Media Marketing Designs” can help students reaffirm that business is the right career path for them.
Another course students might want to consider is the “Google Project Management: Professional Certificate” offered by Google. It’s ideal for students who want to get some experience in project management and offers more than 140 hours of instruction and lots of practice-based scenarios so students can start to understand the field better.
Once you have completed the MOOC, make sure to update your LinkedIn, resume, and college application to showcase your new skills and commitment to your career. With hundreds of classes available, students will never run out of something new to learn.
Some students interested in joining the financial field might want to start learning about the stock market and spend the summer investing. Classes like Teach Me Wall Street Virtual Online summer camp can give students a crash course on the basic information to get started in a crash course.
Because investing in the stock market does require a bit of seed money, it might deter some students from exploring this option at first. However, that shouldn’t stop students from getting hands-on experience in the stock market because they can take advantage of risk-free ways to get experience like Investopedia’s Stock Market Simulation. Students can start with $100,000 in virtual cash that they can use to test out the market before diving in and investing their own money in the stock market. The site helps students connect with other traders or join challenges, which helps make it more fun.
After gaining experience, students might want to consider starting an investment club at school to help them, as well as others, gain experience in the world of finance. To get started, students might want to consider asking an economics teacher or another teacher to serve as the mentor or faculty advisor to the group. As they learn more about investing money and playing the stock market, they’ll also build relationships with like-minded students, as well as their mentor (who they might be able to ask for a letter of recommendation down the road).
In addition, by starting their own club while in high school, it shows that they took the initiative to start something and can effectively lead at a young age. When they first create the club, the student likely will want to host informational meetings that help teach the basics of the stock market. As the group starts to learn more, the student can hold meetings that talk about world events or invite business professionals to come and share their knowledge. The students can also even watch movies about investing and trading and then have discussions about them afterward.
Many high school clubs can participate in stock trading simulations. Students can buy and sell stock through an online program that acts as the real stock market would. The club members can work together in small groups or individually as they start to become more exposed to the stock market. And, some of these sites even host competitions so the club’s skills can collectively be put to the test.
Get An Internship
An internship can help students confirm what their goals are in college and can demonstrate their work ethic, allow them to meet new people, and showcase practical application of skills. Getting a (un)paid internship when they are still in high school or college shows a level of maturity and responsibility.
Many internship positions get filled months in advance; especially for prestigious companies, there might be an early deadline to apply. Before applying, spend time crafting a resume that truly shines and can showcase their best qualities. The resume should feature the student’s achievements and qualifications. Even if they don’t have any previous work experience, they can focus on other parts like extracurricular activities, volunteer work, or anything else they might do.
To find an internship, try reaching out to local businesses within the field that the student might want to pursue. If a student is struggling to find an internship, try to tap into their network. Friends, family, old coworkers, acquaintances on LinkedIn might have an open internship position. By asking around, students can find the best internship position for them.
Volunteer At A Nonprofit
Though the goals of nonprofits and businesses are vastly different, a business major can still find a home at a nonprofit.
Some of the business-related positions that nonprofits typically need to be filled include fundraising jobs. This type of person works with getting donations that will be given at a planned date or in installments. Other positions could be marketing roles that require the business major to use their skills to create organic or paid campaigns.
Some nonprofits will hire someone to analyze and interpret data to help them make stronger financial decisions and investment choices. This role might be a financial analyst or program analyst, whose main job would be to help a nonprofit grow its funds or improve its operations.
Start Their Own Business
Many high school or college students might want to consider starting their own business. Students who have the beginnings of an idea might want to attend virtual entrepreneurship programs like Beta Bowl, which gives students the tools they need to start their own business.
It doesn’t need to be a complicated, large-scale company. Students could start with something simple, like dog walking, lawn care, or babysitting. Or, students could also share their handmade crafts on Etsy or social media. This can help students learn different things like organizing time, gaining customers, and managing multiple responsibilities.
It’s okay to make mistakes and even to fail when learning about business. Instead of treating mistakes as a negative experience, take the time to learn and develop from them. Students might want to consider getting a mentor who can help them navigate the beginning stages of starting a business and any road bumps that occur along the way.
Spend the summer months to concentrate on building skills. As schools and jobs become more and more competitive, students need to have more than just a great transcript to stand out from the crowd. To get that unique element to their resume, students should concentrate on impactful projects that demonstrate skills through outcomes and progress.
By diving into the business world, it can be the ideal way for students to gain a spot at their dream university and in their dream career.