Make The Most Of Your Summer: DCU Careers Service

Get Inspired To Make The Most Of Your Summer

Make the most of your Summer 2021!

Every summer brings its own challenges and opportunities, particularly this year. But we know that DCU students love a challenge, so how will you make the most of your summer?

We have put together a wide range of themes to give you some ideas. Through our DCU Career Conversations podcast, we have also heard from DCU students about their experiences from last summer and how they rose to the challenge of Summer 2020.

Get your summer planning started with a variety of resources, including podcasts, videos and the recording of our 'Make the most of your summer' session. We have lots of ideas to help you use your creativity and initiative to gain valuable experiences and even boost your CV. We have also launched a competition with some great prizes!

So, why not set aside a little time to check out these topics, get inspired and get your Summer plans underway...


Summer CV Tip Sheet

Summer CV Tip Sheet - available now on Loop!

Check out our new Summer CV Tip Sheet available now to download at 2020/21 Careers Service on


Click here to download.

And don’t forget, we have other resources available to help you build a strong CV:


So, where should you look for opportunities for Summer work?


Be proactive in your job search by using a combination of both jobs boards/job websites and your network to find suitable opportunities. Make sure you let your connections know that you are looking for job opportunities and you can also send out speculative applications as not all roles are advertised.


Having said this, however, online Jobs Boards are a great place to start your search. Many allow you to set-up job alerts that will notify you by email when a role relevant to your preference has been published.


It’s important to note that new jobs are being added to Jobs Boards all the time, so if you don’t find what you are looking for now, set-up your profile to create job alerts. Be patient and keep checking! 


Here are a few suggestions to get you started! This is our very own DCU Careers Service Jobs Board, which is made available to employers who wish to hire DCU students. Jobs published on the platform include graduate programmes, entry level positions, full and part-time roles, as well as summer / vacation work. New roles are being added all the time, so if you don’t find anything suitable now, check back again soon! You can also select Job Alerts in your profile so that the system sends you an email when a relevant job is published. includes a Jobs Board, Careers Events, Advice and also has information on Further Study. Check the Jobs section for opportunities.


There are lots of large commercial Job Boards available to explore. Here are a few to help you kick-off your search: is Ireland’s national association of community and voluntary organisations, charities and social enterprises - a ‘one-stop-shop’ for anything related to the charity and nonprofit sector. The Jobs section advertises opportunities for both paid and voluntary roles in the non-profit sector.


Best of luck with your job search! And remember, Summer 2021 may be a challenging year for some sectors in terms of Summer work. If you don’t find the Summer job for you, check out other opportunities such as Volunteering, Micro-credentials, Sustainability Initiatives and much more.



Volunteering is a wonderful way to invest your time this Summer. There are so many benefits both for you and for your wider community. Here are our top 5 reasons to Volunteer:

  1. Help to make a difference in your local community or in the wider world.
  2. Develop a range of vital skills such as leadership, problem solving, communication, agility, time management. 
  3. Gain valuable experience.
  4. Build your confidence.
  5. Meet new people and have fun!

You can research volunteering opportunities to connect with your local community and some organisations are offering virtual volunteering roles, providing opportunities to volunteer in the wider community.

So, where do you start…


Listen in to our special podcast episode on How To Volunteer:

Have you ever thought about volunteering but don’t quite know how to go about it? This episode of Career Conversations will help to get you started! Siobhán Murphy meets Ruth Lynam, DCU Student Volunteer Coordinator to discuss what to consider when exploring volunteer opportunities. Ruth shares her own experience of volunteering during her time as  a student here in DCU and how that experience has shaped her own career.

Click Here To Listen on Spotify.

Also available on Apple Podcasts and other podcast platforms!



Get inspired by our short video on Volunteering

Watch this short video presented by Ruth Lynam, DCU Student Volunteer Coordinator.
To find out more about volunteering and how you could get involved.



Just to note: Some organisations may have paused their volunteering opportunities during current circumstances, but you can use this time to do your research and be ready to get involved when restrictions are lifted.

Get Inspired 


Want to make the most of your summer but not sure where to start?

Why not listen to some of our latest DCU Career Conversations podcasts where we spoke to students to hear how they made the most of summer 2021!

Also, during the Make the Most of your Summer Live session we asked attendees to share their ideas ranging from book recommendations to podcasts, courses and activities. Click the link to check out Make the Most of your Summer student ideas


Micro-credentials are short, free or low-cost online courses, where content is delivered in ‘bite-sized’ pieces, so that you can cover the content easily in your own time. 


Micro-credentials provide a great way to study topics of interest to you - either to build on the skills you are learning as part of your studies, develop skills to broaden your employability, gain knowledge in an area of interest or just for fun! 


FutureLearn is one example of a micro-credentials platform, with courses consisting of pre-recorded video lectures and presentations, along with reading materials that you can work through when it's convenient for you. They also facilitate student discussions on each course and some have online practice quizzes, homework or assignments.



There are lots of other platforms you can check out too including: Coursera, Udemy, Alison, EdEx.


Many courses are free to take, but some require a fee for certification.


So, why not explore your interests? You could study a new language, start learning a new programming language, navigate new business skills or explore your creativity. No matter what you pick, you will expand your knowledge and skillset, while boosting your CV at the same time!

Spotlight on Sustainability

Take the opportunity to learn what sustainability is really all about.  We have a special podcast episode for you where we meet Samantha Fahy, DCU’s Sustainability Manager.


Samantha explains what climate changes mean for our planet and calls on each of us to make a difference. In particular, she makes a call to action for us all to assess their own carbon footprint this summer and understand the impact of our daily actions. The episode is full of simple and effective changes each of us can begin today and how we can also influence those we live with too.


Samantha reminds us that political decisions are needed and we can influence action through contacting our local representatives and letting them know that climate change needs their attention NOW! 


Samantha is very interested in hearing from students who have an interesting sustainability thesis and projects and would like to engage with the sustainability agenda in DCU.


Click here to listen on Spotify.


Also available on Apple Podcasts and other podcast platforms!

While we're on the subject of Sustainability...

EPA logo

Listen to our latest podcast!

Listen to our latest podcast: Career & Life Choices: Environmental Protection Agency & The Choices We Can Make


Click here to listen on Spotify.

Meet Fiona Mc Coole, Inspector and Manager of National Waste Prevention Programme with Ireland’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Fiona explains the critical role the EPA plays and how as climate change becomes an even bigger challenge how we all can make a much bigger difference than we could ever imagine.  She unpacks the principles behind waste management and the challenges of burning fossil fuels - and busts some myths! 

The episode contains practical things we can stop and start doing from today, that will help us change our impact on the environment.

Fiona also talks to us about graduate opportunities in the EPA and critically explains the diverse opportunities available as you develop your career in the EPA. 

And if this episode inspires you, our penultimate year Science students can seek an application form for their summer internship programme by emailing


Also available on Apple Podcasts and other podcast platforms!



We hope this information helps you to make the most of Summer 2021.

Whatever plans you make, remember:

  • Keep note of your experiences and the skills you develop such as planning, time management, communication skills, teamwork, organisation skills etc. These are skills Employers will want to hear about.
  • Whatever activities you undertake, be sure to refer to HSE guidelines, be aware of any health & safety regulations and respect social distancing.

Take some time to do something you enjoy and have a good Summer!