Try something different this summer

Milkround's Abbie Baisden on how to spend your holiday

The end of the academic year is fast approaching, and you're probably daydreaming about how to fill the coming weeks of freedom.

Holidays, festivals and part-time jobs are usually favoured over this period, but this year why not try something a bit different? There's still time to get yourself organised and take part in some CV-building and life-enriching activities.

Start your own mini-business

Most students want to earn some cash over the summer, but why not take the opportunity to exercise your entrepreneurial side? Find a business project you're passionate about and dedicate three months to it - you could upcycle furniture to sell on eBay, or hire out your technical skills to build websites for small businesses.

You may not make your first million and Duncan Bannatyne may not be chasing you down to invest in your business, but you will develop valuable habits like self-motivation and organisation.

Work outside your chosen industry

My first summer after graduating from my communications degree, sick of living on a student's budget, I took the first job that I could find: working as a temp in a telesales department for a major insurance company.

This was an industry and role I had never dreamed of working in (being more of a words person than a numbers person), but the experience I gained while working there has been a huge asset in my career ever since.

I learned to work to different objectives than the ones I was used to, being given numerical targets rather than feedback-based ones, and to communicate with people from a range of backgrounds, understanding their individual needs and finding a solution.

Although I won't be applying for a similar position any time soon, I haven't had a single interview since then where I haven't used my time there as an answer to at least one of the questions. All new experience is good experience, so get out of your comfort zone.

Leave the country

If you've ever thought you might like to work abroad for a while then there's no time like the present. It's likely that you'll never have as much freedom to take three months out of your life without many other commitments to consider as you do right now, so go for it.

If you want to work abroad, there are organisations that will arrange a job for you, as well as a visa for your selected country: you just need to decide where you want to go.

So knuckle down, get your end of year exams of the way, and then start your chosen summer adventure. Whether it's business, travel, or something else, make it count!

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