Whether you are a recent graduate seeking to gain practical experience before furthering your education in grad school or are currently pursuing a master's degree in counseling and looking for ways to build a stronger resume, summer jobs for counseling students may be the perfect option.
While summer break is the perfect time for having fun in the sun and decompressing from the school year, it is also a great opportunity to build real-world skills outside of the classroom as well as earn some extra cash. Since all employment is certainly not created equal, the following is a look at some of the best summer jobs that will help you build relevant knowledge and skills that will help you get started on a rewarding counseling career.
Become a Summer Camp Counselor
If you are a counseling student considering a career in coaching, teaching, child development, school counseling, or even sports psychology, spending your summer as a camp counselor can be an excellent career move to add meaningful experiences to your resume. Not only is it extremely rewarding to work with children and enjoy the warm sunshine by organizing outdoor activities, working at a summer camp also provides a great chance to practice your counseling techniques. When you choose to become a summer camp counselor, you will be able to practice mentoring skills, apprentice with experts, develop a lifelong network, and even earn possible internship credit. After all, working as a camp counselor means you can include strong teamwork, leadership, creativity, communication, conflict resolution, public speaking, problem-solving, role modeling, decision-making, and planning skills to your resume.
Work as a Nanny or Babysitter
Since busy parents with children out on summer break are always creating a higher demand during the summer months, finding a job as a nanny or babysitter can be the perfect option for counseling students looking to get paid well while learning invaluable skills. Whether you are pursuing a career in school counseling or are simply considering working with children and adolescents in your counseling practice, having hands-on experience with kids is an enticing skill to put on your resume and can boost your confidence in your own abilities. While caring for children always has an element of fun involved and often includes accompanying families on their vacations, becoming a nanny will also show future employers that you are creative, responsible, reliable, trustworthy, patient, and organized.
Find a Paid Summer Counseling Internship
Although temporary summer jobs can be an effective way to obtain hands-on experience, finding a paid summer counseling internship is typically the best way to hone your counseling interests in a specific career specialty area. Depending on your professional goals, there are internships available to work in a mental health treatment facility as a patient advocate, working on a college campus counseling students about career decisions, providing counseling services to inmates in prisons, helping individuals battling addiction in substance abuse centers, and more. When you participate in a paid summer internship, you will be able to network with other mental health professionals, acquire practical skills from mentors, and familiarize yourself with the same duties you will be responsible for after graduation.
Overall, there are many different summer jobs available for undergraduate and graduate students who are interested in pursuing a career in counseling. In order to ensure you find the perfect summer job or internship that fits your personal interests, it is highly recommended that you start your search around six months in advance to stay ahead of increased competition for the same opportunities. After landing one of the summer jobs for counseling students, you will have the skills and experiences needed to boost your resume for a bright future as a professional counselor.
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