By: Harleen Ghuman ‘22
With the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, many, if not all, of us are forced to spend our Summer 2020 at home. In fact, some may even find themselves in a situation where an internship was postponed or canceled. The circumstances of being remote should not discourage you from productivity, but rather encourage you to take advantage of the situation and embark on unique opportunities that you find beneficial from a professional standpoint.
Here are some ways you can make the most of your remote summer:
Professional Skills and Certifications
Now is a great time to hone your skills and prove to recruiters that you are well-versed in the functions and skills within your internships. Figure out what skills you want to learn, found is important to know in the career/industry you’re pursuing. From there, research any certification courses you can take online. Once you have successfully completed the course, you can confidently say you are well prepared in that skill.
Lynda, now LinkedIn learning, offers many certification programs that follow the in-demand skills many employers are looking for. Once completed, you can simply add it to your resume and LinkedIn profile via a badge. This is a great way to expand your professional profile and widen your knowledge. The service is currently offering a free trial for one month. However, if you have an account with the New York Public Library, the service is free!
Write a blog
This shows recruiters your passion in whatever industry you are pursuing and your writing skills. Additionally, your communication skills will develop and improve further. All of this will help you in the future as it will allow you to become more familiar with your field of choice.
Look for Virtual Internships and Networking
It may seem like an obvious suggestion but there are more companies each day that are offering remote work. Many companies and organizations recognize the demand for such experience and have turned to offer internships specifically designed and catered to be adaptable to the current situation. Be on the lookout for these openings. To help you out, here’s a comprehensive list of places that are hiring or have hiring freezes.
Take this chance to network! Reach out to professionals you have come in contact with or organizations that you share an interest in. It doesn’t hurt to reach out and ask if they have any opportunities or projects they would like to recruit for. Networking like this can allow you to develop a micro-internship experience. Read one of our previous blogs, “Networking is (Not) Scary” to learn more about networking!
While you still want to be careful being outdoors, you can still be a part of a community in which you feel a part of or share the same beliefs and values. By doing so, you can build skills and increase your network while making a difference in the community.
How? You can offer to improve an organization’s website, build a social media campaign, or start fundraising. You can also start your own project and gather a group of people to embark on your own volunteering project. The ideas here are endless. Visit our Catchafire blog as a way to obtain volunteer opportunities through a site.
Everyone is handling the current situation differently and will take on projects that best fits their situation. Discover what you are capable of doing during this time. Showcasing determination and dedication is a great display of productivity. However, the most important takeaway here is to take care of yourself. Use this extra time to relax and recharge. Relinquish the meaning of summer, even if you are limited to outdoor activities. We are going through unprecedented times and it is important to put yourself first. Stay safe!
Interested in writing a blog for the Career Development blog? It’s open to Macaulay students and alums. If you would like to contribute or have any questions, feel free to email Jamie.Ruden@mhc.cuny.edu.