6 Ways to Have a Productive Winter Break

It’s almost winter break- soon you’ll get the chance to relax and enjoy a bit of down time! Make the most out of your break by taking the time to further your professional development. There are many ways you can take the next step in your career path, including:

  • Updating your LinkedIn profile and your resume. If you had an internship, joined a club, completed a training, or learned a new skill during the fall semester, document it! Use the LinkedIn and resume tips resources on the BCC website to get started, and make an appointment with a career coach so you can review any changes you made to your resume or LinkedIn when you get back to campus.
  • Connecting with friends, family, and alumni in your hometown. While you’re at home, utilize your personal network to make connections! Reach out to family friends who work in an industry or role you want to learn about or use the LinkedIn Find Alumni function to make a connection with a Penn State alum in your field. Whether you are looking to make a connection at a certain company or just want to learn more about someone’s career path, alumni are more than happy to help as they were once in your shoes! Grabbing a coffee for an informational interview or shadowing someone at their job for a day can help determine if work in a certain field or industry is for you.
  • Working a part-time job. Even if it doesn’t directly relate to your field, the experience you have in customer service or retail will add value to your resume.
  • Starting to look for externship or leadership program opportunities (if you are a freshman or sophomore). Many companies begin recruiting for their externship or leadership programs in the spring. Search through Nittany Lion Careers for these opportunities that are targeted towards younger students in order to have them learn more about a company or job type.
  • Continuing the job or internship search (if you are a junior or senior). If you haven’t landed a job or internship for the summer yet, keep looking! Nittany Lion Careers has thousands of postings that you can filter on by major and many companies will be on campus to recruit at Spring Career Days. To make the most out of your search, follow these tips.
  • Learn a new skill through Lynda.com Have you wanted to learn Photoshop or become an Excel whiz, but just couldn’t find the time? Winter break is a great time to take a day and scroll through some courses on Lynda. There are thousands of free training videos that you can access, and many teach valuable skills employers look for that you may not necessarily pick up in class.

Start off your spring semester strong with an expanded network, a new skill, and a fresh resume! Schedule an appointment with a career coach if you have any questions about the job or internship search or how to utilize resources that are available to you.

By Emily Yanchuck
Emily Yanchuck Marketing Communications Specialist Emily Yanchuck