Sophomores Don’t Despair

Moving on…

During your sophomore summer, it is critical that you do something.  Want a few ideas of things you can do to help you gain experience and skills that are transferable to future employment? Then check these out!

  • Stick with your previous employer but ask for business related work (market your excel analytics, take a leadership position, apply your business related knowledge)
  • Volunteer – again, apply your business knowledge, don’t just do volunteer hours, ask to help a non- profit with things business related, help write grants, conduct analysis on their cash flow, do research for the org that requires analytics… notice the word analytics is used more than once… that’s intentional.
  • Conduct research, get interested in something and research it, not talking about general knowledge, talking about deep dive research, become an expert in something, if you can use your analytical tool kit even better.
  • Conduct industry/company research including informational interviewing.  Basically, use the summer to network for next fall.  Year over year we have examples of students who do this really well.  Gaining a deep knowledge and connecting with multiple people at your target firm is often just as beneficial as gaining experience.
  • Travel, during COVID travel abroad has been limited but putting together an epic road trip and experiencing new places is absolutely something you can talk about in an interview – sitting on a beach at grandma and grandpa’s condo in Boca is not an epic road trip,  that’s just vacation, think big – hike a section of the AT/ Do research on something and then go visit it/ hit some national parks/ in order for it to be interview worthy the planning and execution requires effort.
  • Take classes or teach yourself a market desired skill set.  Interested in Tableau or Data visualization? Want to become an expert in R? The modern environment allows you to learn in more ways than just through traditional coursework.  “Hey Google, find me a video on tableau.”
  • Be an entrepreneur, nothing shouts out initiative more than setting up your own business.  Even if it doesn’t get fully launched, going through the process of writing a business plan, setting up an LLC and thinking through governance is a valuable experience.
  • Be interesting and creative!

There’s no set path but make your story interesting and people will want to talk to you. If you have questions about what to do this summer set up an appointment with a UCS Coach.

By Kori Renn
Kori Renn Director of Career Advising