What Summer Activities Will Help My College Application?

Looking to give your college applications a bit of a boost this summer? There are plenty of things you can be doing over the three months you’re off, even if you’re out of class. Here are just three examples of summer activities perfect for your college applications:

Take Summer Courses

There are plenty of options when it comes to summer courses! One place you may want to consider is your local community college. Some will offer high school students the opportunity to take actual college courses taught by the same professors that teach year-round. However, the classes have limited space and do require an application.

A similar option is participating in a summer program that your school or college is hosting. It could be similar to a course or may be more research-intensive. Ask your high school or college if they have anything like this.

A third option, especially if your local college doesn’t offer much for high school students, is taking online courses. Websites like Coursera have intense courses. For a small fee, you can receive a certification in the class after you complete it, but you are also welcome to take the course free of charge. You can find just about any subject you’re interested in there or on similar websites.

Work On Your Skills

The summer is also a great time to be working on you, beyond the classroom. You most likely have interests beyond normal high school courses. Now is the time to be concentrating on them, because believe it or not your hobbies and passions can actually help you get into college. Think of a project and get started!

Some examples of activities you might want to take on are writing short stories or a novel, building a robot, gardening, programming, video production, or something else aligned with your goals. Consider your desired major and think if there are any particular skill sets you could be working on that could help your application and education.


Colleges love to see students that volunteer! With plenty of free time over the summer, you can really dedicate yourself to volunteering in the local community. There are most likely plenty of options right in your area.

Many students consider volunteering at animal shelters, nursing homes, summer camps, and food pantries. However, there may be other opportunities in your area like volunteering for a wild animal refuge, archaeology programs, city clean up, and fundraising events. Do research into your city and even if a group or business doesn’t offer volunteering opportunities upfront, you may want to contact them to inquire further.

These are only three great summer activities that give your college applications a huge boost! Some other opportunities include internships, job shadowing, or even just getting your first job! There are several ways to continue to improve yourself over the three months away from school. You should also use this time to research future schools, visit colleges, and start to study for the SAT or ACT. However, at the same time, make sure to take plenty of time to yourself. After all, it’s your vacation!

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