If you are unable to find a CS internship or a research project, do not dismay! You can still be productive and add bullets to your resume while at home this summer!
Consider taking on side projects. They keep you moving forward with what you already know while also pushing you to learn new skills and tackle problems on your own. Working on side projects is the perfect excuse to learn new and upcoming languages or frameworks and stay ahead of the curve.
We recommend working on open source projects. We hear time and again that hiring managers want to see contributions to open source from their applicants. Summer is a great time to focus on that! Open source projects offer powerful preparation for your next internship or job. By contributing to open source projects, you become aware of how tools and languages piece together in a way that your personal projects cannot. You learn to collaborate and project manage. You build on your communication, teamwork, and problem-solving skills. All skills that hiring managers look for!
What do we mean by open source projects:
Maybe your goal for the summer was to learn enough Python to land a great internship or job next year. Don’t stop at Python, look into learning the graphics processing library, the web frameworks, or the scientific modules. This is a great way to test the waters and see what you really enjoy doing. Take the summer to play and learn at your own pace and really hone in on what you are most interested in doing.
Check out this opensource.com series “Young professionals find the open source way a good fit”
- Collaboration isn’t what they taught you in school by Kristen DeMaria, on her experience at Red Hat.
- Open source love at first commit by Levi Bostian, on his experience as a Computer Science major.
- Leaders are catalysts for shared purpose and results by Sarah Shelton, on her experience at Red Hat.
- Women interns rocking open source at Xen Project by Lars Kurth, on interns working on the Xen project via GSoC.
- Looking for a technology job? Learn as much as you can about open source by Josh Teder, on his experience at Red Hat.
- Open source has me brainwashed by Derek Brown, on interning with Red Hat’s corporate strategy department.
- What is a software engineering job really like? by Anne LoVerso, on being an intern for the team developing Project Atomic at Red Hat.
- Coding all summer long in OpenStack by Victoria Martinez de la Cruz, on her Google Summer of Code experience with OpenStack.