5 Tips for Landing an Adventurous Summer Job

From dude ranches to mountaintops here's how to score a summer job that’s anything but boring

Photo courtesy of Mountain Sky Guest Ranch

Emigrant, Mont.

Summer is just around the corner and ideally that means three straight months of carefree fun in the sun. In reality, however, most of us need to work—but that doesn’t necessarily mean we need to cut our time in the great outdoors.

There are opportunities to work everywhere from dude ranches to mountaintops across the country. National Parks need additional staff in the summer too. Cool Works, an online job board that posts adventurous summer jobs, has seen listings increase and employers are still hiring for the summer.

Related: 11 Summer Jobs that Could Change Your Life

“Cool Works has experienced a 30 percent increase in summer job listings this year and we currently have 152 posts for employers pushing to fill positions in the next few weeks,” said Patty Ceglio, Director of Operations for Cool Works. “While urban summer jobs may be in decline, there are more opportunities in 2014 than in recent years for last minute job seekers to land a position in a great place.”

 As seasonal employers look to fill positions, Cool Works has come up with some tips for job seekers looking to land an adventurous summer position.

#1 Check Your Bucket List—For job seekers who don’t know where to start, identify locations of interest or activities you’ve always wanted to try. Interested in hiking the summer away in a national park or spending time at the coast? Use these interests to help narrow down focus to a few locations and start looking for parks, campgrounds, resort and ranches in those areas.

#2 Think Adventurously—Don’t be afraid to explore outside your comfort zone. Sure, a seasonal job may be across the country but it offers perks that many summer jobs won’t such as on-site housing and meals. Many employers even throw this in as part of the package.

#3 Be Flexible—Consider a variety of positions and locations. Those who approach the job hunt with an open mind and a willingness to do anything are likely to score a job in a great place.

#4 Exude Professionalism—Just because this is a summer job doesn’t mean you can take the application process casually. Slang and short form won’t go far with seasonal employers. Fill out applications using proper grammar, spelling and punctuation and be willing to download and fill out PDFs if necessary to submit an application. Additionally, provide reputable references on each application – workers with limited experience can turn to a teacher, former employer or coach who can speak to work ethic and aptitudes - avoid using friends or peers.

#5 Leverage Your Connections—Your social networks, both on and offline can be a great resource for finding the perfect summer job. Check your social media sites for friends and relatives who may be working at an adventure destination and find out if their employer is still hiring. Consider touching base with the camp or guest ranch where you spent your childhood years and find out if they are looking for summer counselors or to fill other positions.

See Also:
Cool Summer Job: Trip Leader with Backroads
Cool Summer Job: Summit Steward in the Adirondacks
Cool Summer Job: Wrangler on a Dude Ranch


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