You have a challenging term, so you would earn the right to give yourself a break this summer. You don't fancy the summer blockbuster season lineup after writing essays on movies with English subtitles. You wondered why it won't get a wide release until it dawned on you that the Big Apple would be a drive away. (You'll get to that part later.) And then you learned about your coursemate's holiday in Europe. You wished for your very own adventure, which should turn you into a different person after your return. Then again, your tutor warned you about the perils of backpacking. (You don't want someone, whom you meet on the road, tag you with embarrassing photos on Facebook.) The could be other ways to make you occupied this summer. You would learn to love the heat.
If you're about to enter college this fall, then you must prepare yourself for the challenges of the coursework. If you're about to enter your second (or third) year in college, then you should think seriously about expanding your network. If you're about to enter your final year in the university, then you must brace yourself for the real world. You must think about these options seriously, but not too serious (about it). You should enjoy your (summer) break.
Read, Learn, and Do it
Visit New York. If you intend to go on a holiday, then you don't need to think of a faraway place. If you want your cultured self to immerse in a new (sensory) experience, then you don't have to fly to the other side of the Atlantic (Ocean). New York has it all (and it may be your hometown after all). If you fancy the outdoors, then the Adirondack Mountains will lift up your spirits. Finger Lakes is another good option if you're on a Walden state of mind. Let's not forget the New York side of the Niagara Falls. New York City won't disappoint anyone, as there's something to do there. Music festivals, indie cinema (or World Cinema), the US Open series. You name it, you'll find one.
Catch up on your reading. If you're a comic book fan, then you'll have the opportunity to look back at the archives and see what issues you have missed. And you don't want to be the last to know. (There have been additional shooting of "Thor: Ragnarok" and "Justice League", which should keep fans talking about it until the release date.) You might want to challenge yourself further, giving those classics another chance. Your friends don't need to know it. (If they do, then you don't have to explain it to them.) A second, even third, reading will make you appreciate these novels. It might give you some tips for the next Reading Week.
Watch a movie. It doesn't need to be the latest offering from Netflix, even the next attractions from HBO. If you have Turner Classic Movies (TCM) in your area, then you don't want to let the summer pass without watching one black-and-white film. (You're still wondering about Preston Sturges. The long wait is about to come to an end.) The Cinemax Classics offers the finest in B Cinema. And you should know better. (Paramount launched its ambitious project of bringing some of cinema's iconic monsters together. It would be a series of remakes and reboots.) You don't want to devote all your time into movie marathon, but your family (and friends) won't mind at all.
Volunteer. If you're really serious about your future, then volunteering will put you in a win-win situation. If you have selfish motives, then you don't have anything to be ashamed of. (You'll meet new people. You'll learn new skills. You'll gain new perspective, which can have a positive effect on your writing style.) You may insist on the pretense (that you want to make the world a better place), but there's a grain of truth behind it.
Enroll in a summer course. It doesn't have to be a Romantic language (after meeting an attractive foreigner who was on an exchange program). A writing course will make you more aware of your writing style and the techniques that you still need to work on. You can also go online (and possibly study on your own). You must have a high commitment (to pull it off).
Look for a summer job. You'll need the money, and there won't be a shortage (of summer jobs). Taking your neighbor's pet dog for a walk can help you in the long run.
Find a new hobby. It shouldn't be video games, as you may be recovering from eye strain. On the other hand, you can attempt to work on your vocal chords. (Your buddies might be delighted at it.) Anything that will make you a well-rounded individual.
Sweat if off. You spent more time in front of the computer screen last term, so it should be right that you would get physical this summer. Moving around will keep you healthy enough. Going out will provide you the much-needed sunlight. Not that you would need more, though.
Spend more time with your family and friends. Who else do you have to go to?
Hit the beach. The summer season would be incomplete without a visit to the beach. It's probably the best place to be.
Here's a tip for an unforgettable summer
A wise student will think about his/her career at this early stage. You can talk about it with your tutor, who can introduce you to some people. You'll never know where it will lead you, so try to be open minded about it. (In other words, don't expect too much from it. This is all about setting yourself to possible opportunities.) You can also write a CV, even a resume. It will be a good exercise, as you'll modify it sooner than you expect it. You can introduce yourself to older students especially those who will receive their undergraduate degree next season. It give you some pointers on how you can prepare yourself for the professional world.
If you're serious about the gap year, then you should know that many employers are wary of young people embarking on a holiday (during their gap year). They have good reasons to think that way. You're old enough to be responsible for your own actions, and this should be the right time to show it.