By Chantal Bechervaise
School’s out for summer! If you have teens in your household looking to make some extra cash (to pay for school or to upgrade their smartphones) and they have not found a summer job yet, don’t fret. A lot of businesses are still looking to hire students in June, as a lot of earlier hires change jobs or make other plans.
What are the benefits of having a summer job?
Summer jobs teach new skills, which can be added to a resume, and look good when applying to a college or university. By having a summer job, you can show to the admission officers that you are committed and have initiative and leadership skills. Even low-skilled, entry level positions help with this. You can demonstrate the initiative that you took in finding the job, you can demonstrate commitment by sticking with the job, and you can demonstrate leadership by showing up early, staying late and by going above and beyond what is required of you.
If you pick up your job fast and are good at it, you can also demonstrate leadership skills by helping to train other new employees that start throughout the summer Having a summer job provides an edge later on in life too, when you start looking for that ‘real’ job.
Having previous experience shows that you are able to get along with others and have a good work ethic. A summer job can help develop the soft skills that are not always taught in schools, such as communication, problem solving, and good interpersonal skills. Plus having a good reference from a summer job is always a bonus.
Student Job Search Tips:
Take your time filling out the application forms
Most summer jobs will require a student to fill out an application form. Treat the application form like a resume. Print clearly and legibly. Take the time to make sure all the information is accurate. Have someone proof read it before handing it in. (Picking up an extra application or two is a good idea in case you make a mistake.)
Drop off the application in person rather than have mom or dad drop it off. (It shows more initiative and that the applicant is serious about finding work.) Make sure to dress appropriately too. You never know if the hiring manager is going to be on site. (I have seen some managers hold impromptu interviews.) In fact, when you drop off the application form, ask if the hiring manager is available. That way you know they got your application and you can ask about other available positions.
Clean up your online image
A lot of potential employers will ‘Google’ someone before hiring them. Take a look at your Facebook profile, Twitter profile, and any other social media profiles that you may have. Untag yourself from unflattering photos or ask friends to remove them. And before you post or tweet, think how a potential employer might view that comment.
Student Job Resources:
- Family. If a member of the family has a business or parents of friends have family businesses, ask if they know of anyone looking to hire a student for the summer.
- Friends. if any of your friends already have a summer job, ask if their employers are looking to hire more students. A recommendation from a friend to a boss can go a long way in landing a summer job.
- Around town. Look at windows of store fronts and restaurants for help wanted signs.
- Local employment centers or student centers.
- Local papers.
- Online job boards / classifieds (i.e. Monster, Workopolis, Craigslist, Eluta, etc.).
- Google “Summer Jobs” in your city or town.
- Twitter accounts and hashtags (i.e. @CampLeaders @getsumcampjobs, #YoungWorkers #SummerJobs).
- Facebook groups and pages.
Industries / Businesses that hire summer students
- Summer Camps
- Community Pools and Beaches
- Restaurants and Cafes
- Amusement and Theme Parks
- National Parks
- Retail Stores
- Pet Sitting
- Hotels and Motels
Do you have additional tips for securing summer jobs for students? Please share them with us below.
Chantal is located in Ottawa, Ontario. She is passionate about everything related to the World of Work: Leadership, HR, Social Media and Technology. You can read more from Chantal at her TakeItPersonelly blog or follow her on Twitter @CBechervaise.