6 Summer Activities for High School Kids That Look Great on College Applications


During the school year, your kid is busy with studying, homework and extracurricular activities.

But what about summer activities for teens?

What activities can or should your high school student participate in over the summer that will help them become stronger college candidates??

First, I want you to answer this question: what does your kid like to do??

Summer can be a great time to boost the resume and participate in activities that look good on a college application. But this doesn’t mean that your kid should be miserable over the summer.

The list below will help you brainstorm summer activities for high school kids that will help to boost your kid’s resume. But remember to ask yourself: What brings my kid to life? What activities is my child curious or passionate about? Those are the type of activities your child should participate in!

Here are the 6 categories to think about…


1. JOB

Whether your child needs the money or not, getting a job in the summer is a great way for your kid to show colleges that they can take on responsibility. If your kid can show progress or promotions by working at the same place for multiple summers, this can also show commitment and leadership. For example, your child may work as a lifeguard, a counselor at a summer camp, or behind the counter at a restaurant. Jobs can show colleges that your child is a hard worker.



If you’ve taken my online course, you know the importance of helping your kid pick a future career path (even if that path may likely change one day!). Summer internships are a fantastic way for your kid to get exposed to new career fields or see whether or not they even like a particular career. Although summer internships are often unpaid, they look great on college applications and can be a fun way for your kid to begin shaping their future career aspirations and identifying potential college majors. For example, your kid may work at a local business and realize they want to major in marketing. Or they may shadow a physical therapist and decide they are interested in a kinesiology major.



This may seem obvious, but many parents forget that summer is a wonderful time for your child to participate in activities that bring joy and develop talents. Does your kid love soccer? Perhaps they’ll dedicate a few hours each day to getting in shape and improving their skill. Does your kid enjoy computer coding? Maybe they’ll spend their summer developing an app to sell. Colleges want to see that your child spends time doing the things they love. Summer is a great time for your teen to pursue their passions.



Think of this topic as an extension to #3, pursuing hobbies and talents. It’s not important to attend an “impressive” summer camp. Rather, summer camps are a great way for your kid to learn and develop new skills. Is your kid an athlete? Sports camps are a great way to become a stronger player. Does your teen love music? This could be a great time to become a better musician or learn an additional instrument. Or is your child an artist? Your child could improve their craft at a summer camp.



Though some kids may want to avoid school work at all costs during this time, summer programs for high school kids can be a great way for your teen to delve further into studies that truly interest them. Does your kid think they may want to study psychology one day? Perhaps they’d like to take a psychology class at a local college. Or does your kid have an interest in business? Perhaps they could sign up for a 3 week entrepreneurial program at a college. It’s not important for your kid to spend tons of money attending a program at a top-ranked school. Rather, these activities show that your kid takes initiative, can handle tough work, and follows their interests.



Last, but not least, on the list: volunteering. Summer is a wonderful time for your child to do some good in the world. Does this look good on college applications? Sure does. But more importantly, does this activity bring your child joy for making the world just a little bit better? I hope so! Instead of just volunteering somewhere random, encourage your child to do volunteer work that is meaningful to them. Did your child enjoy spending time at the retirement home with a grandparent? Perhaps they could organize game nights at the center. Does your kid think about becoming a medical professional one day? If so, maybe they want to volunteer at a hospital. Does your kid love basketball? They could volunteer as a coach in a struggling neighborhood. The possibilities are endless.


The take-aways:

Summer is absolutely a great time for your child to pump up their resume in order to become an even more stellar and competitive college candidate. However, kids are taking on more and more stress in high school these days when it comes to challenging classes, homework and the stress of future college admissions. So don’t forget that summer is an extremely important time for your child to relax, have fun and be a kid! In addition to leaving plenty of spare time just hang out, encourage your child to participate in activities, jobs, internships, hobbies, camps and hobbies that TRULY bring them joy this summer!


Topics covered: summer activities for teens, summer programs for high school students, summer activities for kids, college admissions, college admission extracurricular activities

%d bloggers like this: