What ways can I be productive this summer?

Updated: Jul 14, 2020

See what Aleka from Women in Mechanical Engineering (WME) has to say about productivity this summer.

Q: What ways can I be productive if my internship was shortened or cancelled this summer?

A: Glad you asked! Hey y’all! WME here :) This unusual summer calls for creative strategies to stay productive and sane. A lot of our plans have been turned upside down since early March 2020. Here’s some ideas I’ve personally found helpful and others I intend to implement soon. Here’s to staying sharp and industrious! Try ‘em out and comment what you think!


  • Maintain a regular sleep schedule and establish a wake up and bedtime similar to what you would have kept during school on campus.

  • Mark out chunks of the day for productivity. (Stay productive during the hours you normally would have been working at an internship, i.e. 9am-5pm.)

  • Eat healthy and drink lots of water!

  • Make a list. Make a schedule. Stick to both.

  • Get up and move around… try a new workout! UTRecSports revamped their YouTube channel and offers a variety of at-home workouts for you to check out!

  • Sign up and complete a virtual race/event! Check out Active for a number of virtual events and ideas for all things health and fitness.

  • Create/reassess your budget

  • Go through your email inbox

  • Check-in with friends/family via phone or video call

  • Educate yourself on current events

  • Learn a language: Rosetta Stone, DuoLingo, Babbel, etc. (My sister got into sign-language recently and that’s pretty dope! Fun fact: there’s a large deaf population in Austin so it might come in handy while you’re here.)

  • Take a virtual museum tour! Check out this website for links to virtual tours of famous museums.

  • Clean out your closet

  • Volunteer

  • Learn a new recipe… or learn to cook in general! Allrecipes has a huge database of recipes to get you started or to provide fresh inspiration.

  • Find a job (I was a Favor deliverer for a while and that was fun! Exploring town and different restaurants and things. My friend got a job cleaning pools this summer and he’s making BANK… just saying.)


  • Virtual networking: expand network and check-in with current contacts

  • Remote work/internship… Here's a virtual internship website I came across!

  • Set up a blog, podcast, or website

  • Update your resume, Linkedin profile, etc.

  • Join a job board: Indeed, Glassdoor, Handshake etc.

  • Clean or organize your laptop files (LOL this one hit home)

  • Set up a routine and an ideal workspace

  • Earn a certificate: Photoshop, Excel, Solidworks, Adobe

  • Take an informal class… UT offers a number of niche courses that last a weekend or a few weeks. Some of their summer courses include: Adobe Photoshop, Beginning Drawing, Getting Started as a Backyard Beekeeper, Introduction to the Stock Market, and Private Pilot Instruction. Explore more courses here!

  • Organize notes and school/work materials

  • Study something unrelated to your subject… UT’s Library system is an extensive resource for any kind of course or genre you might be interested in!

  • Read a book! AND join a book club or write a review

  • Get a jump on your coursework

  • Summer classes

  • Learn a coding language: Java, C, Python, C++, Virtual Basic… check out edX here for a plethora of courses!

  • Mentor and be mentored

You can find WME on social media here!

Website: texaswme.weebly.com

Facebook group: Women in Mechanical Engineering at UT

Instagram: @texaswme

Women in Mechanical Engineering (WME) is a tight-knit community dedicated to helping female mechanical engineers at UT Austin expand their networks, develop improved professional and academic skills, and ultimately become the next-generation of female leaders in STEM.

This blog post was written by Aleka Neptune from WME. Aleka is a senior mechanical engineering student and is WME's president.

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