Being at Emerson, it’s likely that you’re constantly surrounded by freshmen with more on their resumes than your parents. That’s just the way it is here, which means there can be a lot of pressure to build up your own portfolio through internships or other professional experiences. However, as we all know, starting out can get a little tricky—especially when you don’t get that call back from a position you really wanted. The truth of the matter is that sometimes things just don’t work out, but fear not. Even if you didn’t land the perfect internship position, there are still a lot of ways to stay productive this summer. Here are just a few ways that you can make the most of your four months off from school.
I’m going to let you in on a secret: even though you haven’t graduated yet, your work is good. Whether you’re a writer, visual artist or filmmaker, just the fact that you’re pursuing an arts degree means that you’re skilled at your craft. Believe it or not, companies are always searching for people that can do little projects for them here and there with no strings attached. This means that you can make some pocket money from doing what you love, all while practicing your skills and getting real world experience. Content-based websites are constantly fielding pitches (like VinylMePlease.com or HelloGiggles.com, just to name a few) and if you have an idea about an article, email them! Alternatively, Joseph Gordon-Levitt has become notorious for inspiring young artists to collaborate on his platform HitRecord, a website that gives artists prompts and then eventually publishes the best works (meaning if you are chosen, a check is coming your way!) Just trust your talent, put yourself out there, and you’re bound to make something great for someone this summer.
A Summer Job
We all know college is expensive. We’ve all seen the memes about it and we’ve all cried to our friends and families about the ridiculousness of a 100 dollar textbook at least once. But what can you do about it? The obvious answer—the one that not even I like hearing—is to get a job. I know, this is only a temporary solution to the much larger issue of absurd tuition funds but it wouldn’t hurt to put a few extra bills in your wallet this summer from a part-time job. Besides, working retail can be fun sometimes if you find the right place and can also be a good resume builder if you’re looking to enter the customer service world at any point. Indeed.com can be a great place to find some local listings, so just log on, type in your zip code, and see what happens!
Build A Portfolio
Something I think that all Emersonians forget sometimes is that our art isn’t just our career outlet. At the end of the day, it makes us who we are, it relieves our stress and social anxieties, and it lets us exercise our creativity. So this summer, instead of selling your art, just think about making it (not for anyone but yourself.) If you’re a VMA, then make some short films that aren’t class assignments. WLPs, write some stories for yourself. Then, at the end of the summer, choose your favorite pieces, compile them together, and make yourself the awesome portfolio that you deserve. Make something that represents you as an artist, not as a professional, and hopefully that will be the distinguishing factor that can help you get the job next time.