So, your student is looking for a summer job. You know you can help – but how much is too much? It’s a parent’s conundrum and understandably so.
Here are some helpful suggestions of what you can do to help, without disrupting your student’s ability to learn from the experience:
Suggest Job Search Resources
While students are familiar with the Internet, they should also be looking in key local spots. Make sure to suggestion that he or she stop in businesses and local organizations to see if they’re looking for summer employment.
Your student should not overlook other key job-hunting resources, like workforce centers, community centers or the nearby college’s career center – or even bulletin boards at libraries, coffee shops and other community hot spots.
Give Them Contact Information
As an adult, you likely have friends, professional colleagues and other contacts who work within or, perhaps even own their own businesses who may have open summer positions.
Offer to put your student in touch with your contacts or give them the contact information to contact the individuals themselves, but leave it up to your students to do the legwork.
Do not ask your contact to give your student a job – that’s not the point! It’s all about networking and getting a foot in the door.
Help Develop a List of Strengths
One of the most difficult tasks in creating a resume is coming up with strengths, skills and abilities about yourself.
Luckily, as a parent, you’ve witnessed it all and you’re in a key position to help your student come up with a comprehensive list.
In addition, help your student develop a list of what his or her interests are as well. Obviously he or she is aware of these interests but coming up with them on demand is often more difficult.
When you point out the obvious, your student may realize his or her summer job potential quicker than doing so alone.
Even though your student is applying for a summer job, it is still important to maintain a sense of professionalism.
From seeking an application, dressing appropriately and conduct on the job, it’s important that your student understands that being professional can make all the difference in the world between getting the job, keeping that job and having a return job offer for the next summer.
Many students are at a disadvantage because they do not understand this and show up to ask for an application with a group of friends or dressed in sweatpants.
Encourage yours to dress nicely when seeking an application, speaking respectfully and he or she will be light-years ahead of other applicants.
Creating a basic resume will also help your student stand out. Many student applicants simply fill out an application alone; however, a basic resume looks impressive and shows extra effort and professionalism.
A resume, however, does not replace filling out an application so let your student know that an application should be filled out when given. After all, why would they give out applications if they didn’t want applications to complete them?
All of the above suggestions are meant to help and encourage your student – not do any of the work for them.
Remember, it’s best to guide your student and let them do all of the work on their own, otherwise they won’t learn from the experience, which is part of the point of having a summer job!