Whether working in the retail or food industry or going down a more unique route, a part-time job
can provide valuable experience and new skills that look great on a resume. However, choosing the right job can require some zeal as you scroll through various listings (that still somehow don't match the requirements despite all the filters).
From needing scheduling flexibility to fit in family events to developing a specific skill set to make your resume stand out for future career opportunities, various factors sometimes have to be accounted for.
Part-Time Summer Jobs: What to Consider
First and foremost, a part-time job should fall into one of two categories (if it's both, that's even better!): it either pays well or is relevant to your future career
or academic plans. For instance, if you plan on entering the publishing world, try to get some editing experience, whether it be at your local newspaper or an internship with a publishing company.
On the other hand, if you can't find an internship or position opening that correlates with your career ideas, then look for a job that pays well. After all, you might also have summer classes or family responsibilities to attend to, so make sure the position is allowing for savings, paying for tuition, or at the very least, covering basic expenses, such as food and gas.
With these two categories in mind now, below are ten unique summer jobs
for high school students and summer jobs for college students that offer flexibility, solid pay (including tips, for some), and stand out on a resume!
- Camp Counselor
One of the most classic summer jobs out there, there's a reason being camp counselor continues to remain such a popular choice. From spending time outdoors and away from the soul-sucking monotony of fluorescent lights to building up communication and problem-solving skills, being a camp counselor can be a rewarding experience!
It shows you're capable of leading a group and able to think quickly on your feet. Additionally, there's often some travel required, allowing you to check-off sightseeing from your bucket list.
- Sales Associate
Minimum wage prices have been steadily increasing the past few years and with companies such as Costco and Target offering competitive salaries, becoming a sales associate can help create a healthy amount of savings for the upcoming school year. Depending upon your specific duties, you'll be able to brush up on communication and teamwork skills all while getting that employee discount.
Again, another quintessential summer job (unless you can't swim, of course), being a lifeguard can be a solid summer job. The work is usually laid back while you get to catch up on your vitamin D intake; it also allows for the much-needed break before heading back into the chaos and stress of the approaching semester.
While school may be out for you, there are plenty of middle and high students who use the summer to catch up on their studies and prepare for the upcoming year. The hours are flexible, letting you take on another part-time job if desired, and you'll be able to keep practicing the material (for example, if you're tutoring Spanish), helping you remain prepared as well!
Additionally, having tutoring experience displays the ability to lead and communicate effectively, as students rely upon you to help them learn the material successfully on time, looking great on a resume.
- Freelance Worker
As a freelance worker, you can find work in editing or digital design to everything in-between! However, with this flexibility also comes the hard part of finding steady work. Freelance jobs require some digging, but once you're able to get a foot in and begin a portfolio, acquiring contracts becomes a little easier.
Since many postings require at least some experience in the field, freelance work is a great way to develop and showcase creative skills, whether in copywriting or graphic design, among others. Listing freelancing on a resume showcases organization and proactivity, letting potential employers know you have a creative side and a steady work ethic.
- Zoo Attendant, Gallery Attendant, etc.
Since the summer months present an influx of tourists, various sites such as museums or zoos will often hire attendants to help with the increased crowds. Depending upon your field of study, these positions offer great support by pairing academic experience with work experience.
For example, if you're an art major, check if any museums near you are looking for gallery attendants to ensure security. Likewise, a biology major may benefit from working part-time in a zoo. These positions help bolster your academic experience by allowing you to use your knowledge in a real-world setting.
- Virtual Assistant
Working as a virtual assistant can be helpful, especially when you need flexibility with your hours. It can bolster your claim to organizational skills, while also allowing you to strengthen other crucial elements such as marketing experience.
Additionally, depending upon your boss, the job can be somewhat laid back, allowing you to juggle side activities such as volunteering or another part-time job.
- Dog Walker or Animal Shelter Worker
Imagine getting paid to spend time with precious four-legged buddies. Dog walking is a competitive field that offers, depending upon location, great salaries all while enjoying some sunshine and time spent well with a cute dog!
However, it can be difficult to find work, especially if you're just starting, but word of mouth and flyers can go a long way. Furthermore, if you can't snatch up a dog walking job, working in an animal shelter is a similarly rewarding experience, if not more so!
You'll be around both cats and dogs and other animals depending upon the shelter, providing much-needed companionship to the animals and support for the facility. One downside to this position is low wages since shelters often struggle with funding, but knowing you're making a difference is a reward in itself!
- House Sitter
Another job requiring little skills is freelancing as a house sitter. Based upon the location and owners, house sitting can offer reliable pay while allowing flexibility as you can mostly spend the hours as you want.
Usual duties include light dusting, watering plants, and overall ensuring security since an occupied house is more likely to ward off potential break-ins. The rest of the time is yours, allowing for you to catch up on your reading (and finally become an expert on Russian literature) or work a virtual job (social media manager maybe?).
If you're comfortable with picking up heavy furniture and other objects, then working as a mover can be a great job! The pay is more substantial since it is contract-based rather than the weekly or bi-monthly paycheck, while also leaving room for tips.
Additionally, there is also some flexibility depending upon how often you're able to find work, and you're getting paid to work out! As for placing the position on a resume, it displays a solid work ethic since you're willing to put in a lot of effort and strength.
No matter the job, with some perseverance, the skills acquired can go a long way. Whether you work at a fast-food chain or intern with a tech company, what future employers seek is your ingenuity and how you performed under differing circumstances.
The position doesn't have to match up exactly to what you're studying or planning on studying. In fact, it likely won't match up exactly. Instead, focus on gaining experience in specific fields.
For instance, as a history major
, an art museum may be an unlikely place, but instead of the art, focus on the museum setting. If there is a specific time period or location that the museum specializes in (for example modern art or American art), use the opportunity to expand your knowledge in that area with how culture and the art scene reflected the historical events taking place.
The ability to compose your experience and skills in a manner that translates to what a future position requires is invaluable. Additionally, not all jobs have to give support to a future goal.
It's perfectly fine to simply save as much as you can (tuition is expensive), spend time volunteering
and giving back to the community, or building up on other talents. What matters is showing a dedicated work ethic and a passion for some particular cause or ideal!