The international outbreak of COVID-19 upended many college-bound students’ plans. Typically, juniors and seniors fill their summers with internships, trips abroad, and/or college preparatory courses. It goes without saying that in this tumultuous time, these students are facing unprecedented challenges. They have no choice but to adapt.
But while the pandemic may change the landscape of productivity, it doesn’t mean one can’t have a productive and fun summer. Thanks to the internet, there are tons of apps and online resources at one’s disposal, making it possible for students to pursue their interests and prepare for university with ease.
1. Online Courses and Distance-Learning Platform
Students looking to build up their resume with relevant coursework, new skills, or improve their standardized test scores should definitely consider digital learning platforms, like Ivy Talent’s online courses. All of Ivy Talent’s courses are taught by instructors with years of experience in their field and will help students build a strong foundation or increase their skills, in any high school or middle school subject they are interested in. This enables students to prepare for and succeed in future, more advanced courses.
Ivy Talent also offers signature programs in economics, psychology, creative writing, US politics and government, writing for competitions, international relations, public speaking, and computer science. These programs frequently include research components where students will be able to complete their own research and write a paper by the end of the course.
2. Remote Internships
Some companies are adapting quickly and offering virtual and remote internships. Job board sites such as WayUp, Chegg, and LinkedIn constantly advertise internship opportunities. These websites also have great digital spaces for networking and allow applicants to create and share resumes and CVs. Plus, one major pro to interning remotely is students can make professional contacts and do their work on their own time. Many virtual positions ask interns to only commit to ten or twenty hours, making it possible for interns to also hold a part-time job. If advertised opportunities seem scarce, try social media. Facebook, Instagram, and even Twitter have groups dedicated to students and young professionals. Within these groups, people share volunteering opportunities and freelance projects. Interested members can direct message (DM) their applications and resumes/CVs. In some cases, such direct lines of communication allow applicants more visibility and control over the application process.
Many people have become displaced due to the pandemic. As a result, individuals and organizations are stepping up to assist and provide for those in need. Whether it’s by sending care packages and letters to elderly isolated in nursing homes, lobbying for systemic reformation, or raising money and awareness for hunger relief organizations and nonprofits, people are volunteering their time, skills, and energy towards good, productive causes. Students can do the same. Again, digital and social media are great platforms to find causes and organizations to support. Organizations such as Feeding America, Direct Relief, and countless others welcome eager volunteers. Students can contribute by managing nonprofits’ social media pages, fundraising via sites like GoFundMe, or creating a campaign of their own.
4. Learn a New Language
Obviously easier done than said, but with apps such as Zoom, Skype, and Messenger, international communication is made efficient and easy. Use these platforms to start a language exchange or video-chat club for people interested in learning a foreign language. Consult coursework from language learning platforms like FluentU, Busuu, and Duolingo. While fluency may not be an attainable goal within one summer, use this time to get a good head start. Virtual language exchange clubs are great for holding yourself accountable and making new friends and connections. When borders re-open, you’ll have already built a network of international connections.
While summer plans may have been derailed, it doesn’t mean opportunities aren’t there. Students have a chance to display how well they can adapt to obstacles and change. In the end, schools will value motivated, goal-oriented students who seek opportunities out for themselves.