If you’re like most of us, you’ve probably worked some terrible jobs in the past few years. And if you’re a young student with neither a degree nor any real professional experience, most of your prospects for work this summer are probably looking pretty terrible too. We all know the easy options: waiter, barista, retail clerk, telemarketer, manual labourer, secretary—and we all cringe at the thought of wasting away our youth at these soul-sucking underpaid positions. But there’s a better way! So while your friends are dragging themselves out of bed this summer to make ends meet with the same old cliché student job drudgery, you can go to work each morning with a smile on your face. That’s right, with a bit of initiative, you can land a dream job this summer. Here’s how:
Work the Festival Circuit
The perfect gig for music lovers, socialites, and outdoorsy types; working at festivals and major events is a great way to spend the summer. The job involves some travel, takes up most weekends, and demands long hours at times. But it also gives you the opportunity to see amazing bands, watch top athletes compete, and meet tons of great people. So to get a job working the event circuit this summer, contact the big companies (like Festaff) who help put on dozens of events each year. There are thousands of diverse jobs, from wrist-banding to directing traffic. So if you’re willing to work hard, you shouldn’t have much trouble getting on a crew.
Go to Camp
If you love kids and working outside, why not spend the summer giving back to your community by becoming a camp counselor? You’ll get to play games, go on hikes, and live in a beautiful place far from the city. Plus, positions as a camp counselor look great on resumes, build leadership qualities, and show employers that you’re both responsible and community minded.
Have you always wanted to travel, but been discouraged by the steep cost? Then get a job abroad. Head off to a country where the cost of living is low, and find yourself a job that helps you connect with the local community. Contact hostel owners, farmers, hotels, and ESL schools to find short-term positions. Many travelers also fund their adventures by working as bartenders or activity directors. It takes a bit of networking to get your foot in the door, but the advantages make it well worth the trouble.
Golf This Summer
Believe it or not, caddying is ranked as Forbes #1 best-paying summer job. So if you like golf, head to the nearest course and start asking around about opportunities. Cadies typically make about £50 for each bag they carry (plus tips), and can usually work for 2-3 golfers each day. Plus, it’s great exercise, it’s easy, and you get to work outside. What more could you ask for?
Become a House-sitter
If you ask me, house-sitting is hands-down the coolest summer job around. People with vacation homes need caretakers to look after their properties while they are away. So they will let you stay in their houses for free (and some will even pay) if you look after their lawns, water their plants, and hang out with their pets. It’s certainly no way to get rich, but with all the opportunities for freelance work out there on the internet today, housesitting can be a great way to live rent-free and see the world while making a modest income on the side. To get started, check out sites like: trustedhousesitters.com, mindmyhouse.com, and housecarers.com.
For anyone willing to break free from the ordinary, the possibilities for life-changing summer jobs are nearly endless. As a student, you have an incredible degree of freedom, which is only going to diminish as you get older. So why not take advantage of the fact that you have few responsibilities, limited possessions, and no obligations? Go out and see the world. Go on an adventure. Take the leap and forge a new path for yourself, because your summer shouldn’t be spent toiling away at a dead-end job. If you’re willing to work for it, this summer might just change your life.