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What College Admissions Officers Look For: How Do Colleges View Summer and Other Experiences?

By — John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Updated on Jul 20, 2010

What you do in the summer is somewhat of a controversial topic. Some students and their families believe that students need time off from school and that the summer is a time for fun and may include attending or working in camps. Other students and their families find that the summer is an opportunity to do something different that can be added to your résumé. There needs to be a way to do both, to have fun and to engage in challenging activities. Some colleges place a heavy emphasis on summer experiences and others do not.

Working during the year or during the summer is a good way to earn money for college, to get your feet wet in the “real world,” and to build vital life skills such as working with others. Colleges typically view work experience positively as long as it doesn’t interfere in your school work and your grades don’t drop as a result.

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