‘Tis the Season

By: David Ross

‘Tis the season to enjoy and indulge in the many great things happening around the holidays. Finishing up the semester. A brief respite from the many things you’re involved with. All of those seasonal items that make you happy – ciders, cookies, coffee blends…the list goes on and on… Not setting the alarm to wake up early in the morning (ok, maybe I’m biased on that one). The upcoming start of a New Year (and the many celebrations that precede it!)

‘Tis the season to also take advantage of any extra free time and proceed with your job or internship search. As some people customarily create lists this time of year, here’s a list of tips to utilize your free time during winter break:

1) Devise a plan. What do you hope to accomplish during your break? Outlining the parameters of your plan of action can be helpful to remain focused.
2) Open the lines of communication. During those get-togethers and celebrations, engage in small talk. Converse with family and friends – but also don’t be afraid to branch out and mingle with others. You never know if that conversation with the person sitting next to you on your plane or train ride home may be beneficial. Ease your way into conversations and see what useful information you may find.
3) Connect, connect, connect. If you are returning home, connect with local companies and businesses while you’re in town. Of course, companies will be closed at some point for the holidays, but try to speak with someone or schedule an informational interview at companies of interest while they are open.
4) Get up-to-date and creative. Update your resume with new information from the past summer and fall. Create or update cover letters to target companies and opportunities.
5) Apply yourself. Take some time to apply for jobs or internships you discover in your search.

And most importantly (and perhaps my favorite) – set aside some time to relax, have fun and enjoy winter break – you deserve it!

Author: David

David Ross is a Senior Associate Director of Career Services for Wharton undergraduates and occasional blogger for "Penn & Beyond."