December 13, 2010

Why a Summer Job in Alaska Beats a Mundane Internship

Summer jobs.

They’re an annual rite of passage for college-aged students, and also the source of much anxiety. Countless young students search for their summer jobs terrified by one thought: if it’s not a meaningful internship in a relevant career industry, then they won’t be able to find a good job after college.

While it certainly won’t do you any harm to land a good internship, people often overlook the value of finding a summer job that can give you a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

And where can you find one such experience?  A perfect place to look is in the summer vacation industry, which thrives in Alaska. There are a plethora of lodges, resorts, and other companies that only operate during the warm months, offering exciting positions in remote and stunningly beautiful locations. Among the top summer employers is Princess Tours.

Here are a few reasons why working summer jobs in Alaska is way better than slaving behind a desk at some lowly internship.

It’s more of a resume booster than you think

Perhaps the primary reason people balk at working at places off the beaten path is the threat of a black hole in their resume. They may even believe that getting an internship in the field they eventually want to pursue their career in is the only way to set themselves up for future job placement.

What these people don’t understand is that putting something out of the ordinary on your resume is a great way to stand out. Hiring managers sift through an endless pile of resumes when they post a job opening.  By spending a summer working in Alaska, it demonstrates to future employers that you are willing to take risks and not succumb to a herd mentality. And at the very least, it can be a fantastic conversation starter in an interview.

You will learn practical skills

When a person works as an intern, they usually are left with mindless, repetitive tasks that are handed to them because nobody else wants to do them. All this proves to future employers is that you can have the capacity to complete the same tasks as a trained monkey.

Slip into something a little less primate by working a summer job in Alaska, where you will gain a great deal of experience with real-world issues. You will have much more responsibility than your run-of-the-mill internship, and you’ll develop human interaction skills that will be invaluable to your future job search.  From managing a fleet of lodge vans to meeting the needs of guests, you’ll learn what it takes to function in the professional world.

You’ll never regret it

Twenty years down the road, no matter what career you find yourself in, you will never look back on a summer in Alaska as time poorly spent.   Whether you spend one summer or move there full time: either way you will always have the memories of journeying off to a remote land and discovering what it’s like to live in such a unique environment. You’ll have plenty of time to work in an office later in your life, so why not experience something truly different while your knees can still get you up the side of Denali?

While it may seem like a leap of faith to move your life up to Alaska up for a summer, life’s best experiences occur when you place yourself outside your comfort zone. Find summer employment up in the Last Frontier; you may just make memories you’ll cherish the rest of your life.

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