A barista or a lifeguard at a private club?

With summer approaching and many employers eager to hire due to labor shortages, a new report on 2024’s Best Places for Summer Jobs, could give you an idea of where to head this season to get a job.

WalletHub compared more than 180 markets in the U.S. across 21 key metrics. The data set ranges from the median income of part-time workers to the availability of summer jobs to the commuter-friendliness of jobs.

Top 20 Cities for Summer Jobs
1. Columbia, MD 11. Tampa, FL
2. Scottsdale, AZ 12. Charleston, WV
3. Rapid City, SD 13. Richmond, VA
4. Portland, ME 14. Peoria, AZ
5. Orlando, FL 15. St. Louis, MO
6. South Burlington, VT 16. Virginia Beach, VA
7. St. Petersburg, FL 17. Chandler, AZ
8. Charleston, SC 18. Salt Lake City, UT
9. Fort Lauderdale, FL 19. Chesapeake, VA
10. Pearl City, HI 20. Wilmington, DE

Best vs. Worst

  • Orlando has the most part-time job openings per 1,000 people aged 16 to 24 in the labor force, which is 19.1 times higher than in New York, the city with the fewest.
  • Scottsdale, Arizona, has the highest median income for part-time workers (adjusted for cost of living), which is 3.3 times higher than in Burlington, Vermont, the city with the lowest.
  • South Burlington, Vermont, has the highest labor-force participation rate of people aged 16 to 24, which is 2.2 times higher than in Irvine, California, the city with the lowest.
  • Madison, Wisconsin, has the lowest unemployment rate for people aged 16 to 24, which is 6.1 times lower than in Detroit, the city with the highest.
  • Pearl, Hawaii, has the lowest share of people aged 16 to 24 living in poverty, which is 10.5 times lower than in Burlington, Vermont, the city with the highest.

Tips for a Young Person Searching for a Summer Job/Internship

“Understanding when to apply for summer jobs/internships is essential. Often, young people do not consider applying for a summer job/internship until a few weeks before summer begins. However, many summer jobs/internships post their opportunities as early as December or January for the following summer. Be proactive regarding your summer plans and look for these opportunities early in the year. If you know of a company where you want a summer job/internship, see if they have information on their company page regarding when to apply or reach out about their summer opportunities,” said Brandon Street, director, of Career & Professional Development, at Southern Utah University.

“The key to pursuing summer job opportunities involves preparation and timing. Job search efforts should start as early as possible in the fall. Depending on the industry, such as accounting, finance, consulting, and technology, some companies begin advertising their summer internship openings several months or even a year before internship programs commence in May or June. A strategic job search involves researching companies by reviewing their websites and Glassdoor, crafting a well-written cover letter and resume with input from your college’s career center staff, developing an elevator pitch to introduce yourself to potential employers, attending career fairs, professional development workshops, and conferences to network with recruiters in addition to creating a LinkedIn profile to add your connections, setting up notifications to receive weekly emails about job postings, and applying for as many job opportunities as possible by utilizing your career center’s internal job board and external sites such as InternMatch. If you are open to relocating to a different city or region, you can expand your access to summer jobs and internships,” said Sabrina K. Sanichar, Ed.D.,  director of career services, Feliciano School of Business, Montclair State University.

Most Common Mistakes Young People Make Taking a Summer Job/Internship

“One common mistake students make when taking a summer job is failing to explore new roles. While there is nothing wrong with going back to a job you had in high school to make some cash, you should also look for jobs and internships that can teach you new skills and introduce you to new people. Do not let fear of the unknown or annoyance with applications keep you from trying new things. Not having a full class schedule opens up a lot of time to intern, shadow, or volunteer in industries of interest, so do not waste that time. Every job you have provides a different skill and a different network of employers, coworkers, and customers,” said Lily Corley, assistant director, of career development, at Lipscomb University.

“I believe the most common mistake young people make when taking a summer position is not understanding the intention behind it. Young people believe that the value of the internship is only in the ability to get ‘real-world experience’. While this is certainly a benefit, there is a lot more to it than that! Use this experience as a chance to develop your professional self – think about what you are looking for in a role, what your preferred working styles are, how you handle deadlines/stress, how comfortable are you with asking questions/taking initiative/feedback, etc. Focusing on the awareness of developing these skills and answers to these questions that are intentional offer young people the chance to be less particular with their job search, but also be more decisive and selective at the same time,” said Career Exploration and Success, Offices of the Chancellor and Provost, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

Predictions for 2024’s summer employment?

“Job growth will continue in the healthcare and biotechnology, sustainability and renewable energy, and technology sectors. The increased use of generative AI tools will be utilized to conduct research, generate creative ideas, and expedite project and task completion efficiently in the workplace. Most workers will continue to adapt to a hybrid or fully remote work arrangement, with the resources to operate in this modality, while the remaining will be fully in-person,” Sanichar said.

“Internship demand will remain strong through 2024. But competition is equally strong as some 30,000 PR graduates vie for the estimated 25,000 jobs being created each year over the past five years. Growth by major agencies will vary from down slightly to high single-digit increases as brands rethink budgets and bring some creative functions in-house. Budget cuts will likely continue at more senior levels within agencies so expect to see an increase of talent seeking to switch jobs or begin their consultancies. Small and mid-size agencies will see solid growth in 2024 with creative and digital shops seeing the largest increases,” said Ron Culp, consultant & professional in residence, at DePaul University.

Source: WalletHub