We know that summer is a time when busy young entrepreneurs like you just want to relax and recover from the tough school year. Maybe you’ll use this time to enroll in an entrepreneurial summer program or take some classes at your local college. But if entrepreneurship is your goal and business is your future, consider a summer job.
The right summer job will help you develop the skills you’ll need in your chosen field. You can take all the marine biology classes you want, but there’s no substitute for the hands-on experience of working with aquatic animals. You’ll also gain valuable insight from professionals who have been working in your dream field for years and know all the best methods and tricks.
You’ll also develop important interviewing skills. You’ll learn how to craft a resume, prepare for some of the most common questions used in job interviews, and professionally present yourself. Nailing job interviews is a skill you’ll take with you throughout the rest of your life.
In case you haven’t noticed, we here at the Kantner Foundation love resilience! Resilience is one of the top qualities of successful entrepreneurs. And nothing builds resilience like being able to handle rejection.
You might get the first job you apply for. Then again, you might not. Learning how to cope with rejection even when you’ve put your time, energy, and hard work into something is another life skill. You may deserve the job. You may be the best candidate. But every company, boss, and hiring manager has their reasons why they reject an applicant. Learn how to take it in stride and move on.
When you work hard and get rewarded for it, you’ll feel better about yourself. Few people in this life require zero external validation. Earning a paycheck is just one form of validation you’ll receive from your summer job. With any luck (and careful screening of potential employers), your boss will compliment your skills and talent.
Working hard can be its own reward. It’s a boost to the ego to see your work positively impact someone else. Imagine the joy you’ll feel knowing you made a real difference in someone’s life!
There’s no denying that a summer job will earn you some cash! And what teenager couldn’t use a few extra bucks? Summer jobs don’t usually pay a living wage, but extra money is extra money. Put it into a savings account for when you get to college. Treat yourself to something you’ve been wanting for a long time. Or use it to help get your startup off the ground.
Keeping track of the money you earn versus the money you spend (and the money that’s automatically taken out of every paycheck for things like taxes and Social Security) will help you become better at finances in the years to come. It’s something all young entrepreneurs need to master.
Maybe you’ve spent your life dreaming of becoming a world-class cardiologist at a top-rated hospital. You land a job interning in the cardiology department of a hospital. The first time you see real blood, you faint. Or the staff seems completely burnt out and exhausted. You hate the smell of hospitals. Becoming a cardiologist is now the last thing you ever want to do with your life.
It’s better you know this now, when there’s little at stake, than to go through all those years of pre-med, med school, and resident training. A summer job while in high school will help you focus on which field is truly right for you.
SOCIAL MEDIA BREAK
Overuse of social media and endless scrolling can have a negative impact on teen mental health. On your mental health. Summer jobs are a wonderful way to put down the phone and focus on something else for a while.
Whatever your job, we guarantee it will require your full attention:
Bosses aren’t hiring you to scroll through TikTok all day. (Unless they are.) They’re hiring you to do certain tasks. Pay attention to those tasks and do them to the best of your ability. That means putting down the phone and devoting your attention to your job.
Networking is a skill that all young entrepreneurs need to develop and master. Networking is how you find a mentor. Summer jobs help you meet established professionals in your field who can give you valuable advice for your future career. You’ll meet entrepreneurial peers and potential business partners. The people you meet at your summer job might give you references on your college application or in future jobs.
Let’s be honest. A summer job looks fantastic on your college application and when applying for scholarships. Holding down a summer job shows you’re responsible, committed, bright, and active.
FIND YOUR SUMMER JOB
Start looking for summer jobs as early as January or February and keep looking through the spring. Ask your parents if their companies are hiring. Check out what your friends are doing and if they know anyone who could use extra help over the summer.
Online job boards like Indeed and Glassdoor give you the option of filtering jobs by experience level, internship, location, and other criteria. Try Googling “summer internship” plus the name of your town or county. Go to the website of a company you want to work for and see if they have a “careers” or “job openings” page.
Whatever summer job you find, remember to be professional and do your best!
Click here to learn how the Kantner Foundation helps young entrepreneurs by offering college scholarships to Florida high school students.