QUARTER 3 2019
AN ECLECTIC SUMMER JOB RESUMÉ What All My Summer Jobs Growing Up Taught Me
Whether they’re at a prestigious internship, or in a kitchen flipping burgers, many students are in the middle of their summer jobs. Their motivations range from gaining valuable experience relevant to their desired career path to just earning a paycheck, but any summer job can hold valuable lessons. As a student, I worked a variety of summer jobs. Some I worked for just a few hours, and some for much longer than that. No matter how long I worked there, however, each job taught me hard work and something valuable about myself.
us work out in a field during a thunderstorm — under metal fixtures. When I pointed out the obvious safety hazard, they brushed me off. I quit that job after three days. Don’t get me wrong; I worked plenty of jobs longer than just a few days. I worked as a typist for a bank, a gymnastics instructor
(even though I’ve never actually done gymnastics — figure that one out!), a babysitter, and a customer service representative for an insurance clearinghouse. In fact, I’ve worked almost every job that’s not related to what I do now! My favorite job I had as a student, however, was as a canvasser for the New Jersey Public Interest Research Group. I went door to door, advocating for different initiatives to clean up New Jersey’s environment and improve the quality of drinking water in some areas. I wanted to make my mission their mission. Sometimes, the work was easy. I once knocked on the door of a very wealthy woman in the middle of her fancy dinner party. She made all the guests listen to my mission statement and told them to get out their checkbooks and donate. Other times, the work was hard. Walking door to door in the summer heat and soliciting strangers isn’t a fun experience by itself. But I loved that job because I got to take part in
“Even when the work is scary, if it’s something that you believe in, it brings you joy.”
a mission I believed in. Even when the work is scary, if it’s something that you believe in, it brings you joy. Having so many different work experiences before running my own law firm has helped me make the firm a place where my staff is happy and appreciated. Even if it seems like all I got from early work experiences is funny stories, I can still remember which work environments I liked and didn’t like. I want to make Van Dyck Law a place where employees enjoy working, even when it’s challenging.
One summer, I got hired at Dunkin’ Donuts. Within hours of starting, I could already see that the management team was rude to their staff. I didn’t want to spend a summer in that environment. During my only shift, a car broke down on the side of the road just outside. The occupants only spoke French. I was the only one at Dunkin’ Donuts who spoke any French, so I helped them contact the authorities, took that occurrence as the reason I was supposed to work at Dunkin’ Donuts at all, and turned in my apron.
-Fiona Van Dyck
In a similar situation, I worked for a gardening business where the managers had
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