With the arrival of summer you would hardly think that it would be the time to think about getting involved in university life. Summer usually invokes pictures of lazing about in the sun with friends that you haven’t seen since the last holiday. Many students spend their summer travelling, working or interning. However, to be able to make the most of next year, whether you will be first, second or third year and beyond, this is also the ideal time to get yourself organised for the year ahead.
Update your CV
We are all told that our CV is of vital importance, from internships, to part-time work, to becoming a university ambassador. Summer is the perfect time to update your CV; everything that you have done in the past year is fresh in your memory. It also allows you to have a CV ready in the autumn that you can check over with your university’s careers service. Realistically, term time is too busy, with deadlines and parties, to even think about writing a decent CV. Before most of us realise the time has passed for submitting our applications.
Get ahead on your workload before the year even begins
This could be by purchasing your core reading list as the summer starts. This way you can pace yourself rather than panicking in the first week of term about the amount of reading that you have to complete. It gives you time over the holidays to digest and enjoy what you have learnt. The beginning of term, and the work which accompanies it, will not seem such a shock if you have had some mental activity over the summer. It also allows you to complete all the extra-curricular activities that employers expect during term time (as well as some well-deserved socialising). Not to mention that it will dramatically save your pennies. Book sellers will often increase prices alongside demand, at the start of term.
Decide which societies and activities you would like to join
Whilst this is mainly relevant for those entering first year this is still important to take into consideration as societies can enhance your experience, social life and employability skills. Often it is important to research (if you are a fresher) the potential societies that you’d find appealing. Fresher’s fair can be chaotic and claustrophobic. You may find that you join hundreds of groups that you have no intention in ever attending but that you have completely missed the few you really wanted to be a member of. It usually takes a year to find your feet in a society, to be able to really be able to become involved and perhaps become part of a committee. Therefore you need to be sure that you have chosen the right society to avoid wasting your time.
However, the most important thing to remember is to prioritise what is the most useful way for you to spend your holiday. After all in between all of your preparation for the year ahead, and in between all of your summer plans, it is essential to relax and recuperate. Surely that is what a holiday is for?
Written by, Mariette Cracknell