Best Summer Jobs For Students [And How To Land Them]

Wondering how to fill in your summer? Check out our list of the best summer jobs for students and a few tips on how to land them!

Summer, for most college or university students, means earning just enough money to relax and enjoy themselves for a few months in between semesters.

However, it can also be an excellent time to acquire job experience and to set yourself up for future career success!

This guide will help you find a great summer job that suits your interests!

It will also give you a few tips and tricks to help you land a summer job that you can use to improve your resumes and career outlook.

person walking on concrete road beside brown concrete house near green high trees under white sky during daytime

What Are Some Great Jobs For Students?

So whether you’re looking for an internship at a big-name business or a part-time job in your hometown, we’ve got you covered!

Below, we take a look at a few of the most common jobs that are posted and available for summer students.

women sitting on chair watching body of water Best Summer Jobs

Lifeguard 

Pools and beaches are busiest throughout the summer, so plenty of summer employment is available for swimmers and water-lovers.

There are usually several openings available at local and neighbourhood pools.

If you live along the coast or near a lake, there are also openings at public beaches.

These jobs offer an excellent opportunity to earn a bit of extra cash, while also improving your health and spending time outside having fun in the sun.

Best Summer Jobs babysitting

Babysitter Or Nanny 

Another summer job that opens up a world of possibilities for those who qualify is being a nanny.

If you want to travel, you may choose to look for summer jobs as an “au pair” in another country. Or, if you prefer to stick closer to home, there should be plenty of work during the summer as parents scramble to balance their work life while their children are out from school.

But, on the other hand, if you enjoy staying busy, spending time with children, and being outside, this job won’t even feel like work!

woman standing near monitor

Sales Assistant 

Do you have a talent for persuasion and a desire to support others?

If so, then you could be successful in a sales associate position, whether at a clothing store, pop-up boutique, outdoor shop, telecommunication company, or furniture gallery.

Some stores have commission systems to incentivize you even further.

These jobs are popular with those interested in a future career in industry, finance, or sales/marketing.

But they are also suited if you’re looking for a low-pressure summer job or a discount at your favourite store.

MacBook Pro on table beside white iMac and Magic Mouse

Freelance Web Design 

Working as a web designer could be the perfect summer job if you have a knack for technology, know how to use website platforms like WordPress and SquareSpace, or enjoy coding.

Rather than working a 9-to-5 job, freelances get to set their hours to accommodate a wide range of clients.

In your role as a web designer, you may create websites, upgrade existing sites, add new widgets and apps, or advise clients on how they can make the most of their online presence.

woman in black sleeveless top

Online Tutor 

Tutoring has long been a way for book-smart students to earn money over their summer breaks.

Online tutoring options have also increased due to the Internet, especially with more student studying from due to COVID-19.

So if you are a bright individual with access to the Internet and a computer, nothing can stop you from sharing that knowledge with others who need it most!

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How To Land The Job

Sure, it’s great to know that there are many opportunities out there for students during the summertime.

But how exactly do you land the job?

white printer paper beside silver laptop computer Best Summer Jobs

Write A Fantastic Resume And Cover Letter 

As a student, you’ll want to include any relevant coursework, charity work, and any groups or teams you’ve been a member of on your resume.

Hiring managers may recognize that you lack skills relevant to the open role. But they will also be searching for evidence that you are responsible, capable of completing assignments thoroughly and on schedule, and ready to work hard.

Therefore, applicants should customize their resumes to provide any experience that is closely relevant to the job vacancy in question.

In your cover letter, you should note where you heard about the vacancy and then outline the given job description.

Use the letter’s main body as a “sales pitch” to outline the skills you will bring to the job.

Then, close your letter with a statement of interest in the position, a request to meet for a personal interview, and a heartfelt “thank you” for the employer’s time and consideration.

five person standing while talking each other

Networking 

When searching for summer jobs, networking is a great way to go, and it’s not difficult to do.

Ask teachers, family members, former employers, coaches, colleagues, friends’ parents, and everyone else you might think of for assistance with your summer work quest.

Networking is the simplest way to find jobs, and most people are willing to provide advice, help, and career leads.

person standing wearing red shirt

Volunteering 

Volunteering is a fantastic experience that will open up more doors for you than you ever imagined.

However, we automatically equate it with giving; whether it’s to the community or a worthy cause, we want to believe it’s not about us.

For this reason, volunteering looks great on your CV, as it shows motivation and selflessness. 

Best Summer Jobs

Summer Jobs And How To Land ‘Em

After your last exam, there’s no doubt that you’ll want to kick back and forget about school until next semester.

However, during your time off, it’s a good idea to look for jobs and relevant volunteering experiencing.

Not only is a summer job perfect for earning a bit of extra coin during your down time. But you can also look for job opportunities that can help further your career prospects for later on down the line!

Best Mother’s Day Themed Books – Spring 2021

Looking for the best Mother’s Day themed books to check out this May? 

Why not explore books with complex mother relationships!

It’s a great way to celebrate Mom’s day and better understand all the mothers and mother figures in your life. 

So without further ado, here are the best Mother’s Day books to check out this May.

John Darnielle Presents Universal Harvester - Books - Mother's Day Themed Books

Universal Harvester By John Darnielle

Small town life takes a strange turn when Jeremy discovers bizarre footage appearing on VHS tapes where he works at the Video Hut. 

Jeremy lives with his father in a home where they’ve developed a monotonous routine since the death of his mother six years ago. 

Set in the late 1990s, Universal Harvester deliberately provokes feelings of dread. However, the reader will learn that the actual narrator of this story already knows how everything plays out.   

Darnielle masterfully increases this sense of dread when Jeremy and his friends investigate the strange VHS footage. What is revealed is a story that spans decades, including the story of a young woman whose mother joins a religious cult. 

Ultimately, the theme that ties all these stories together is motherly grief, including the loss of a mother, the loss of a wife, and yearning to find a missing parent.

As a result, if you like a little horror and one heck of a mystery, Universal Harvester should be on your reading list this May. 

Pride and Prejudice. What I learned from Jane Austen's… | by Lena Ovechkin  | Medium

Pride And Prejudice By Jane Austen

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, is considered a classic.

So if you haven’t read it yet, you should check it out this May for Mother’s Day! 

This book follows the Bennet family in 1812. With five daughters under one roof, it becomes Mrs. Bennet’s mission to see all her daughters married to wealthy men. 

While Mrs. Bennet is often mocked and ridiculed for her ridiculous behaviour, her actions speak to the actual problems of the time; if a mother without a male heir didn’t find suitable matches for her daughters, the family could lose everything.  

Full of romance, and a true historical gem, Pride and Prejudice is a mother-themed beautiful book you should check out this May. 

Why Should You Read Toni Morrison's “BELOVED”? | by Insaf Ali | The Blue  Stars | Mother's Day Themed Books

Beloved By Toni Morrison

Beloved focuses on Sethe, a woman born a slave who manages to escape to a better life. However, 18 years later on, Sethe still isn’t free.

Still connected to her life at “Sweet Home” and the horrors that occurred there, Sethe can’t escape her past. And she can’t ignore the present either. 

Her new home is haunted. The ghost of a nameless baby haunts the very foundation of where Sethe now lives. 

Using the power of history, Morrison carves a truthful retelling of slavery and how the past can profoundly impact the future. 

Beloved is considered a great American classic. With its gorgeous poetic prose, it’s a Mother’s Day book you should check out. 

Review: Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens - Book Club Chat - Mother's Day Themed Books

Where The Crawdads Sing By Delia Owens

Delia Owens’s best-selling novel, Where the Crawdads Sing, takes place in Barkley Cove, a small town along the North Carolina Coast. 

For years, rumours about a ‘Marsh Girl,’ Kya Clark, have haunted residents. And these rumours eventually come to a head when a local, Chase Andrews, is found dead. 

Abandoned by her parents at a young age, Kya has learned to fend for herself. Intelligent and sensitive, she yearns for love and finds it in two young men. 

Until something happens that changes everything. 

Where the Crawdad Sings deals with several complex mother-daughter issues, including abandonment, mental health, and spousal abuse. 

Recommended by Reese Witherspoon’s book club, Where the Crawdad Sings is a stunning book you should check out this May.    

The Love Hate, Joy Luck Club – Michigan Quarterly Review

The Joy Luck Club By Amy Tan

By Amy Tan, The Joy Luck Club explores the conflicts between American-raised daughters and their Chinese immigrant mothers. 

In 1949, 4 Chinese women met weekly for a game of Mahjong. Connected by their journey as immigrants to San Francisco, their weekly game becomes an opportunity to talk about what they left behind. 

All four women have daughters who grow up in America and find their mother’s advice irrelevant. At least until they realize that their personal lives have much more in common with their mother’s past than they ever bargained for. 

Best known for her straightforward writing style, Tan evokes complex tension, mystery, and heart in every sentence. 

Therefore, if you love a book with complex mother-daughter relationships, make sure to check out The Joy Luck Club this May. 

photo of baby holding person's fingers - Mother's Day Themed Books

Honour Mom And Get Reading!

Reading great mother themed books is one way to share an experience with your mother this Mother’s Day. 

This list of best Mother’s Day books to check out this May isn’t exhaustive.

However, it should get you thinking about motherly relationships and family in a whole different way. 

Undoubtedly, our mothers are a big part of our life.

So why not explore motherhood, give thanks, and get reading in honour of Mom this May!

Binaural Beats And Studying – Are They Effective?

Have you heard of using binaural beats to improve cognitive function? Below, we examine binaural beats and whether or not they can be used effectively to help you study.

The topic of binaural beats is still relatively new to the world of science. 

In fact, most doctors consider this therapeutic treatment as semi-experimental. 

However, studies have shown that listening to binaural beats may have a positive effect on your brain and cognitive functioning. 

But the big question is; are binaural beats effective at helping you study? 

In the following article, we explore the science behind binaural beats, and most importantly, whether or not binaural beats are effective at helping you study. 

binaural beats and studying

What Are Binaural Beats?

Binaural beats occur when listening to two different frequencies, which your brain then interprets as a rhythm of beat made up of the difference between the two frequencies. 

One ear receives one frequency, while the other receives a different frequency. 

But instead of hearing two distinct sounds, the brain processes both as a single frequency. 

What this means is, you’ll hear these two tones as one single tone, which is why these frequencies are sometimes referred to as an auditory illusion. 

man wearing black Beats headphones - binaural beats

Binaural Beat Tones & Patterns

To achieve a binaural beat, each individual tone must be less than 1000 Hz. 

Furthermore, the difference between the two tones should also be no more than 30 Hz. And only one of the two tones is played in each ear. 

A 2018 study suggests there are 5 categories of frequency patterns produced by listening to these tones. 

These categories include Delta, Theta, Alpha, Beta, and Gamma. 

  1. Do you suffer from sleep issues? Delta patterns (0.5 – 4 Hz) helped participants of the study enter a deeper, more peaceful sleep. 
  2. The study also showed that listening to Theta patterns (4 – 7 Hz) can help with creativity, meditation, and sleep. 
  3. Beta patterns (13 – 30 Hz) help with creativity, alertness, and concentration. However, be warned that at the higher end of the range, this pattern can increase feelings of anxiety. 
  4. For a little relaxation, try listening to Alpha patterns. The study showed that those who listened to 7 – 13 Hz felt more relaxed.
  5. According to a different study, the Gamma pattern (30 – 50 Hz) is the least understood of all these tonal patterns. However, it’s believed that these patterns can help with peak cognitive functioning. 
grey Beats headphones - binaural beats

Are Binaural Beats Effective At Improving Brain Function? 

Studies on binaural beats show conflicting information. 

For instance, some studies show that using binaural beats increase cognitive functions like memory, while others proved that binaural beats have the reverse effect.

That being said, when it comes to attention and concentration, binaural beats have been proven to increase both.  

In other words, there is some evidence to suggests that listening to these frequencies can help you focus and learn while you’re studying your text books.

person in red shirt wearing black and gray headphones

Do Binaural Beats Help You Study? 

According to Psychology Today, you can use binaural beats to improve both your working and long-term memory. 

In other words, binaural beats can help you to recall information that you’ve recently processed while studying. 

Some studies show that Gamma patterns in particular can help to increase attention to detail, as well as complicated problem solving, and brainstorming. 

So despite conflicting study results, when used correctly, binaural beats can increase some people’s ability to recall information. 

This means using binaural beats to study might help you better recall information in time for your next test.

woman writing on book

How To Study With Binaural Beats

It’s easy to study with binaural beats. 

Set aside 15 – 30 minutes before studying. Use this time to listen to binaural beats, which will help your brain tune into the frequency and fall into synchronization. 

Then, you should proceed to study as you normally would. 

You won’t notice any sort of immediate effects. 

However, the next time you try and recall information, the answer will likely come to you much faster than before. 

black framed panto-style eyeglasses beside black ballpoint pen

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Binaural Beats – Who Should Use Them?

It must be said that some people shouldn’t use or listen to binaural beats.

For example, never listen to binaural beats while driving or operating heavy machinery. There’s a risk that the rhythm could put you in a trance. This puts the safety of others (and yourself) in danger. 

  • If you suffer from seizures or epilepsy, these tones can increase the risk of having a seizure. 
  • Pregnant women shouldn’t listen to these frequencies because it increases the chances of triggering labor. 
  • If you have a prescription for tranquilizers or have a diagnosed psychological disorder, avoiding listening to these tones. 
  • Young children shouldn’t listen to these frequencies as it increases the risk of seizure. 
  • Binaural beats can also affect your heartbeat. Therefore, anyone with a pacemaker or heart condition should avoid listening to binaural beats. 
woman in black long sleeve shirt using macbook - binaural beats

Binaural Beats And Studying

Although evidence does suggest that listening to these frequencies can help improve your overall cognitive functioning, they’re not a magical solution for helping you pass that upcoming exam, and they’re not going to be as effective for everyone.

In other words, some people might need to listen to binaural beats longer to achieve the same results. 

Or, they may find that doing so increases their anxiety levels and has the opposite effect. 

Therefore, the best advice is to experiment with what works for you.

With any luck, binaural beats will give you a cognitive boost, and you’ll be acing that exam in no time! 

The Best Spring-Themed Novels Worth Checking Out

Ever wonder about the best spring-themed novels that have ever been penned? If so, look no further!

Spring is here!

And for many, the longer days and brighter skies come as a beacon of hope. Especially after what has been a fairly bleak winter. 

On a bright springtime morning, there’s nothing nicer than sipping on coffee and getting lost in a good novel.

So without further ado, let’s dive into our list of the best spring-themed novels perfect for marking the season.

Tennessee Williams' First Novel 1952 The Roman Spring | Etsy | Tennessee  williams, First novel, Tennessee

The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone by Tennessee Williams

Tennessee Williams is most famous for his plays. But his novels contain the same lyrical language and enticing characters we see in A Streetcar Named Desire and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. 

In The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone, we follow a wealthy middle-aged American widow. Now retired but a former beauty of the stage. She finds herself “drifting” in Rome, where she embarks on a new life.

While adjusting to a new culture and new period of life, she takes a local Roman lover who is as cruel as he is alluring.

This book will take you on a reflective journey with a protagonist. You will both empathize with and despise her at the same time.

And, just like the aforementioned plays, this book too was made into a hit movie you can watch after finishing it!

Spring: A Novel: Amazon.ca: Smith, Ali: Books

Spring by Ali Smith

Acclaimed Scottish author Ali Smith has written a novel for each season: Spring, Summer, Autumn (Fall) and Winter.

Each of her books is juxtaposed with a Shakespeare play. For her spring novel, it’s Pericles. 

Spring: A Novel focuses on two protagonists: Richard, an older man grieving a loved one and Brittany, who works at a detention centre for migrants.

They both board the same train to Scotland and the journey functions as a means to delve into their psyche. It also helps you analyze their opposing perspectives on society and human nature. 

The book reflects on everyday life in Britain, referencing the EU referendum and the general spirit of tension which resulted from it.

All this makes for a compelling political fictional work that’s definitely worth checking out this spring.

Women Talking: A Novel: Toews, Miriam: 9780735273962: Books - spring-themed novels

Women Talking by Miriam Toews

Women Talking by Canadian writer, Miriam Toews, deals with a tough subject matter. But is nonetheless, a beautifully written work and a powerful portrayal of female survival. 

Despite the title, the book is actually told by a male narrator who reveals the accounts of several women. The women were raped and traumatized in the Molotschna Colony. This is a fictional colony based on a real-life mennonite community in Manitoba.

The women meet to tell their stories in spring, in the aftermath of the arrest of their male abusers. 

This is a heavy read that also offers light, humorous moments and ends with a hopeful message of overcoming hardship.

Lot: Stories by Bryan Washington

Lot: Stories by Bryan Washington

In this collection of stories centred around the coming of age of a young man in Houston is an igniting read for spring time. 

It is in this diverse and colourful microcosm of America, the son of a Latino father and black mother navigates his way around the interconnected neighbourhoods of his city.

In Lot: Stories, the plot ruminates on the protagonist’s place in the world while discovering his sexuality.

A well-known favourite read of Barack Obama, this novel paints a compelling picture of marginalized youth in today’s America. 

The Garden Party eBook by Katherine Mansfield spring-themed novels

The Garden Party by Katherine Mansfield 

The Garden Party is a short story by the brilliant Modernist author, Katherine Mansfield.

Written in the beginning of the 20th Century, this story still rings true as a commentary on young female adolescence and issues of class upbringing. 

The ambience of this novel evokes the frivolity of spring. But it carries a far darker sentiment too.

It will certainly bring about reflections on materialism, wealth and death to name but a few of the many themes packed into so few pages. 

Often available as part of a collection of Mansfield’s short stories, it is arguably among the most festive and reflective of Mansfield’s works. 

Fruit Of The Drunken Tree A Novel By Ingrid Rojas Contreras spring-themed novels

Fruit of the Drunken Tree by Ingrid Rojas Contreras

The Santiago family think they’re safe and protected from the surrounding violence of Bogotà, Colombia.

However, once they hire a maid from the dangerous slums, they find their eyes widening and their perspectives changing. The result is two worlds colliding to ignite a new social consciousness. 

If you’re a fan of South American literature and have an interest in Colombian society, Fruit of the Drunken Tree is definitely well worth reading this spring. 

Get Lost In Spring

Spring is a wonderful time to sit on a park bench, open a novel and lose yourself in a story while inhaling the sweet fragrant scents of the season. 

Check out any of these novels, and I’m sure you’ll love them just as much as we all love the warmth of the springtime sun!

Springtime Fitness Tips – Getting in Shape

Looking for a few springtime fitness tips to help jump start the warmer months?

For many of us, a year of quarantine and working from home has seen our activity levels plummet and our opportunities for snacking soar.

Starting a new fitness regimen now will help you come out of the pandemic feeling your physical best. But it will also have the added benefit of improving your mental health in the meantime. 

Below are some tips for successfully starting a springtime exercise regimen, and getting yourself in shape for the summer!

women playing volleyball inside court -Springtime Fitness Tips

Find An Activity That You Enjoy

If you intend on sticking to a workout, then do yourself a favour, and choose exercises, activities or sports that you actually enjoy. 

If you don’t like traditional indoor gym stuff, no problem! There are hoards of other options to help you break a sweat. 

For example, you can try heading out to the tennis courts with a friend. Tennis is a great outdoor option! Plus, it allows you to remain socially distanced throughout the game.

You can also go hiking if you’re lucky enough to live near natural terrain, or simply go for long walks around your neighbourhood. 

If you’d rather stay at home, that’s no problem either.

You can also exercise from home by trying online yoga tutorials or you can let off some steam by putting on some music you enjoy and dancing around for 30 minutes or more. 

There are numerous ways to accelerate your heart rate and improve your fitness without needing to enter a gym or use any machinery.

Find an activity you enjoy and you’ll be much more willing to incorporate it into your routine. 

black and white typewriter on green textile - Springtime Fitness Tips

Be Realistic With Yourself

Sometimes, we get a little eager when planning out a new fitness plan.

We somehow imagine our future self will be motivated enough to go out for a run at 6 am every day and happily do an ab workout five times a week.

If you’re really able to do that, then good for you. But for most of us, these plans simply aren’t realistic.

Instead of setting yourself up for failure, really think about what is realistic for you.

Following along to three short YouTube workouts a week is far better than nothing at all — and it’s pretty easy to stick to.

Aiming to do at least a small amount of physical activity every day is also a good start. And you can always increase the time you spend exercising as you get more accustomed to it. 

When we set modest, realistic goals, we’re more likely to achieve them.

This makes us feel accomplished and motivated to do more and push ourselves!

woman sitting on yoga mat with in front of girl during daytime - Springtime Fitness Tips

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Find a Fitness Buddy

One way to ensure you have a good time working out is doing it with someone that you enjoy spending time with.

The prospect of seeing your friend and catching up will probably motivate you to get out and exercise, plus other people make us accountable and much more likely to show up!

You might even have a healthy sense of competition with your pals, which will motivate you further. 

vegetable stand

Don’t Neglect Your Diet 

As we all know, getting in shape requires a combination of good diet and exercise.

But a good diet doesn’t necessarily mean a restrictive one.

If you want to really get a good workout in, then you need adequate fuel. And this means you need to eat enough calories, protein and other nutrients. 

Restricting calories makes it harder to maintain a good physique in the long run as your metabolism drops. You won’t have enough energy to put in effective workouts, and your body will be reluctant to build any new muscle. 

Try to make all your meals (and even snacks) well-balanced with protein, fat and carbs.

Add in a good daily portion of fruit and veggies too.

If you want to lose weight, focus on maintaining a healthy diet with a slight calorie deficit and ample exercise. 

man holding black barbell

Build Some Muscle

In the past, fitness was very focused on cardio and calorie burning.

However, now we’re seeing a shift towards weight lifting and muscle building, even among women to get into shape. 

The more muscle you have, the more toned you will look.

But more than that, you will have a higher metabolism which will make it much easier to lose fat.

You’ll also feel stronger and fitter on a daily basis!

woman standing on cliff during daytime

Getting In Shape For Summer

Spring is a time of new beginnings and this makes it the perfect occasion to start implementing a new fitness routine and focus on getting in shape.

Stick to these tips and you’ll be ready for the beach in no time!

Top 6 Irish-Themed Books For St-Paddy’s Day

Get in the mood for St-Paddy’s Day with these six awesome Irish-themed books.

St Patrick’s day is just around the corner. We may usually mark this day with a trip out to a crowded and rowdy Irish pub. But this year, we’ll likely opt to celebrate from the comfort of our own homes.

Since it’s going to be safer to stay home anyway, why not indulge in some Irish literary culture by reading a classic Irish tale or two. 

Here are our top 6 recommendations for the best St-Paddy day reads to check out this year!

Image result for The Confessions of Saint Patrick by John Skinner

The Confessions of Saint Patrick by John Skinner

As the patron saint of Ireland, St Patrick is arguably one of the most globally famous saints.

However, not much else is commonly known about his life.

The Confessions of Saint Patrick offers a fantastic insight into the life of this fascinating man who Christianized Ireland. For example, it provides an account of St Patrick when he was kidnapped by a band of 5th Century Irish pirates!  

The autobiography has been republished in a new edition updated and translated by the acclaimed John Skinner. All making it more accessible than ever before.

If you want to discover what all the fuss is about. And why we celebrate this man’s life annually. I strongly suggest you read his confessions to find out more. 

Image result for How the Irish Saved Civilization by Thomas Cahill

How the Irish Saved Civilization by Thomas Cahill

In this fast-paced and compelling written account, Thomas Cahill outlines how Europe transitioned from the Classical Roman epoch to the Middle Ages.

Without Ireland, this revolution could never have occurred. 

Not only did Irish monks and chroniclers keep valuable records of Western civilization (in both Greek and Latin). But when continental libraries were destroyed, and many works were lost. These monks also brought their unique Irish perspective to their writing. 

As Cahill entertainingly describes in How The Irish Saved Civilization, a great deal of the vibrancy we link to medieval culture is rooted in Ireland. When European culture began to regrow, it was from Ireland that they took their seeds.

Image result for Dubliners by James Joyce

Dubliners by James Joyce

Dubliners is a short story collection, first published in 1914. Each of the stories explores the ordinary lives of Irish people living in Joyce’s hometown of Dublin at the start of the 20th Century. 

At times witty, often melancholy, and always moving, Joyce paints a beautiful picture of the Irish daily life.

While Joyce is often celebrated for his more ambitious works like Ulysses, Dubliners is a much more accessible entry point into his work.

Image result for Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt - Irish-Themed Books

Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt

“Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood, and worse yet is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood,” recounts Frank McCourt in his startling memoir, Angela’s Ashes

Born to Irish immigrant parents in Brooklyn during the Depression, Frank’s father is an alcoholic, and his mother has no money to feed her son. Yet, despite his father’s drunkenness and poverty, he manages to instill in Frank a love of storytelling. 

McCourt intimately narrates his tragic childhood, the poverty and cruelty he endured, yet somehow expresses optimism and gentle forgiveness.

This book may make you cry but will nonetheless lift your spirits with its sometimes comical takes on a dire situation.

Image result for An Irish Country Doctor by Patrick Taylor - Irish-Themed Books

An Irish Country Doctor by Patrick Taylor

In this joyful, bucolic tale, an energetic and newly qualified doctor heads to the very rural village of Ballybucklebo in Northern Ireland.

Here he meets the cantankerous Dr. Fingal Flahertie O’Reilly and encounters, through their shared practice, a variety of colourful characters.  

An Irish Country Doctor engages from start to finish, portraying the compelling nature of the hills and dales of Northern Ireland and all the eccentric inhabitants.

With its nostalgia and romanticism. This book will make you long to visit the Irish countryside of Yore!

Image result for Castle Rackrent by Maria Edgeworth

Castle Rackrent by Maria Edgeworth

This 18th-century novel paints a satirical portrait of the Irish landlords of the era.

It recounts three generations of the Rackrent family. And is widely considered the first of the famous ‘Regional Novels’.

Castle Rackrent by Maria Edgeworth is a very entertaining read. The novel also takes on issues of class and Religion in Edgeworth’s contemporary Ireland. 

Image result for The Last September by Elizabeth Bowen - Irish-Themed Books

The Last September by Elizabeth Bowen

Set in Cork during the Irish War of Independence, The Last September describes the coming of a young woman living in a nation enduring political upheaval. 

The affluent couple Sir Richard Naylor and his wife Lady Myra keep an air of superior distance between them and the political events. Yet all the while lingers the future possibility of being free of British rule.

Meanwhile, their niece, Lois Farquar, has her own ideas about freedom. And she pursues her independence while Ireland pursues hers. 

This classic of Irish Literature explores national identity, youth and feminism—a must-read for anybody interested in Irish culture. 

How To Land A Job Straight Out Of School

Looking to land a job straight out of college or university?

While there are many reasons to pursue higher education, landing a decent, good-paying job in the future is probably one of them.

After spending 4+ years investing time, money and effort into getting a degree, you don’t want to spend months struggling even to land an interview. Unfortunately, this is the reality for many new graduates.

However, there are things you can do to prepare yourself for the job market and optimize your employability, even while you’re still studying.

Here are five tips to landing a job straight out of college. 

white printer paper beside silver laptop computer Land A Job

It’s Never Too Early To Start Building Your Resume

Once you graduate, you will be thrust into a pool of new graduates, all seeking work, often in the same industry as you. If you want to get noticed and get the job of your dreams, then you need to stand out in the crowd. 

This means you should aim to start building your resume as soon as possible. You also need to work as building one that is not only impressive but also unique.

Alongside good grades, internships and volunteer work, you’ll want to include any experience that might be relevant. And that might help you stand out from other new graduates.

If possible, see if you can add more stand-out accomplishments like a cultural exchange experience, a second language, a martial arts degree, or even a stint as a sports captain throughout your time at college, which might highlight your leadership skills.

Having a variety of accolades and experiences like these will help you catch your potential employers’ attention.

This is especially true for students taking non-vocational majors, like philosophy, literature or history of art.

While your degree is a valuable and worthwhile experience, it’s often unlikely that employers will hire you based on it alone.

group of people gathering

Networking

Networking is not necessarily shallow people bragging about themselves and exchanging business cards. It can be about genuine interactions and bonding between people. People who subsequently decide to collaborate and help each other out career-wise.

Just think about how many people land interviews and jobs because of a friend’s referral.

Finding opportunities to meet people and giving off a good impression of yourself (both professionally and socially) will be immensely helpful when it comes to getting a job. Especially straight out of college or university.

Therefore, it’s a good idea to look into all kinds of networking.

This includes, but is not restricted to, organized networking events where you can meet people working in your industry. As well as joining community groups, clubs, social gatherings, academic societies etc.

Show up, know your stuff and stay open-minded. You might find doors opening up that you’d never even considered.

person typing on Apple Cordless Keyboard

Start an Internship

Relevant internships will accelerate you on your career path.

Hiring personnel is expensive, and when it comes to dishing out serious salaries, employers want to be sure that a candidate is worth the investment.

Taking on interns is relatively low risk for employers, as they don’t cost much, and there is no pressure to hire them after.

However, if you can convince an employer during an internship that you can be an asset to the company. Then, you might well secure yourself a job after graduating. 

Even if you don’t land a job with the company you intern for, the work experience will prove invaluable. You can earn yourself professional references to use for future job applications. 

However, not all internships are paid, which poses a challenge for many students who rely on having an income. In this case, you can try seeking out paid opportunities or additional financial student aid to help you out. 

Land A Job

Choose Your Major Wisely

Suppose your principal aim is to pay off your student debt and have a comfortable financial situation as soon as possible after school. In that case, you need to prioritize choosing a major which will ensure your employment.

The fact is that majors like Engineering, Computer Science and Nursing yield far better employment rates than, for instance, Classics or Comparative Literature. 

While you shouldn’t sacrifice the things you love, it’s still good to keep in mind that not all majors offer the same employment rates.

Find affordable books at TextBookNova!

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Keep Your Expectations In Check

When you’re fresh out of college or university, the reality is that you’re probably not the best candidate for most positions. Especially when you’re up against experienced professionals, you might not always make the cut.

With that in mind, instead of aiming for the stars from the get-go, try pursuing more obtainable jobs with entry-level positions at first. And then, aiming higher once you’ve got some experience under your belt. 

Land A Job

The Bottom Line

Being at college means you’re already on the fast-track to steady employment. Therefore, it’s best to make the most of your education and take advantage of all the opportunities presented to you.

This way, you really can’t go wrong when it comes to landing a job after your graduate.

Top 10 Romance-Themed Novels To Read in 2021

Looking for the best romance-themed novels of 2021? Keep reading and we dish out some of the best soon-to-be-released romance reads!

As you’re likely expecting to stay home a lot more this coming February, there’s really no better time to get yourself into checking out a few brand new romance novels. 

If you’re looking for the most enamouring and tantalizing releases, then look no further.

Below, we’ve put together a rundown of the top 10 romance-themed novels poised for release this coming year!

woman reading a book while sitting on black leather 3-seat couch

A Lady’s Formula for Love by Elizabeth Everett

In this gripping historical romance, Everett introduces us to the ambitious and scientifically gifted Lady Violet, who forms a covert group of academically accomplished women.

Romance/Erotica Book Review: A Lady's Formula for Love by Elizabeth Everett.  Berkley, $16 trade paper (336p) ISBN 978-0-593-20062-9

The ladies are recruited to undertake a top-secret mission to protect the crown, but will Violet’s affection for her bodyguard Arthur get in the way?

Packed with mystery and suspense, A Lady’s Formula for Love is certainly a must-read for 2021.  

Honey Girl by Morgan Rogers

In this highly anticipated LGBTQ rom-com, fierce academic Grace Porter heads to Las Vegas to celebrate completing her Ph.D.

After a night of raucous partying, Grace wakes up to find herself married to a woman she can’t even remember the name of.

Honey Girl by Morgan Rogers

However, in an act of liberation, Grace moves to New York with her new wife to make a fresh start.

For anyone looking for a heart-throbbing LGBTQ romance novel, Honey Girl by Morgan Rogers is guaranteed to be a hit this year!

The Devil Wears Black by L.J. Shen

A favourite author amongst romance readers, in The Devil Wears Black, L.J. Shen is back with her sensual prose and irresistible characters. 

Maddie Goldbloom is a well-put-together perfectionist with a high flying career in fashion in New York City.

PREORDER ALERT The Devil Wears... - Two Bookish Brits | Facebook

When her ex, Chase, arrives in town and persuades her to pretend to be his fiancé, Maddie’s life starts to get a lot more complicated.

What happens next is sure to thrill and surprise you!

Sweethand by N.G. Peltier

Following an unsavoury public breakup, pastry chef, Cherisse, is taking a break from dating.

But when she’s called on to be her sister’s maid of honour, she finds herself spending a lot of time with best-man-to-the-groom, Keiran.

Sweethand (Island Bites, #1) by N.G.Peltier

These two have never seen eye to eye, but the looming wedding bells cause Cherisse to have a change of heart.

Will it be love? Or will it be a flop? Check out Sweethand this year and find out!

To Love and to Loathe by Martha Waters

In this scandalous tale of aristocratic life, Jeremy, the Marquis of Willingham, makes Diana, the Lady of Templeton, an indecent proposal.

As the two engage in an erotic affair, will their physical chemistry bloom into love?

To Love and to Loathe by Martha Waters

To Love and To Loathe takes you on an unprecedented journey through taboo love and all else risque!

Love in Colour by Bolu Babalola

Following a hugely positive reception from UK readers last summer, Bolu Babalola’s debut novel is finally being released in the states this coming year. 

Amazon.com: Love in Colour: Mythical Tales from Around the World, Retold  (Audible Audio Edition): Bolu Babalola, Ajjaz Awad, Nneka Okoye, Bolu  Babalola, Olukemi Babalola, Headline: Audible Audiobooks

In this collection of short stories, you will find yourself transported from West Africa to the Balkans to the Middle East.

Delve into romantic tales worldwide and learn what love and passion mean in different cultures. For anyone who’s heart is set on romance this February 2021, Love in Colour is guaranteed to be a hit!

Lover Unveiled by J.R. Ward

Despite being the 19th book in her Black Dagger Brotherhood vampire series, Ward does not disappoint with this steamy paranormal romance titled Lover Unveiled.

While the plot is kept closely under wraps, we know that it centres around a new vampire named Savage, an MMA fighter harbouring a secret that could forever change the Vampire world.

Lover Unveiled (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #19) by J.R. Ward - Romance-Themed Novels

His love interest?

A character we’ve met before in the series, but exactly who, we still won’t know until the book hits shelves this 2021!

One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston

After garnering awards for her debut novel, McQuiston is back with her second romance novel titled One Last Stop.

The main character, August, doesn’t believe in true love and isn’t even sure about love at all. That is, at least until she meets the enigmatic Jane on the subway.

One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston - Romance-Themed Novels

But Jane is a girl harbouring a secret: she’s actually a time-traveller from the 1970s and stuck in the present day.

Can August persuade her to stay in the 21st century? You’ll have to pick up this steamy romance novel to find out!

Rise to the Sun by Leah Johnson

In this Young Adult romance, teenage girls Toni and Olivia both head to a music festival to cure their broken hearts. But when the two of them meet, they soon regain their faith in love.

Rise to the Sun by Leah Johnson - Romance-Themed Novels

However, is it true love? Or, is it simply a steamy fling? Check out Rise To The Sun by Leah Johnson to find out!

Isn’t It Bromantic? by Lyssa Kay Adams

This next title comes as the fourth edition of Adams’ Bromance Bookclub series soon, which has been adapted for Netflix in select regions.

Isn’t It Bromantic centres on the love life of Vlad, a Russian hockey player.

Isn't It Bromantic? (Bromance Book Club, #4) by Lyssa Kay Adams

He’s betrothed to a childhood friend, Elena, the daughter of a Russian journalist who escaped to the United States. But this marriage is not what Vlad truly desires, and, after years of holding back, he decides to follow his heart and finally pursue true love.

Tips For Distance Learning And Remote Work

Need some help being productive with your distance learning or remote work? Below, we go over some of the best tips for helping you make the most of your time working from home!

Remote study and work are two of the most modern challenges this new decade has gifted to us.

In fact, it’s a whole new way of life, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the prospect of it, especially when you’re used to learning or working in person rather than over the internet.

But it is possible to be productive and keep on top of everything, even from your bedroom.

So to help you make the most of your time working or studying remotely, we’ve created the following list of tips for staying focused even when working from home!

person using macbook pro on bed

Maintain Routine 

Routine and discipline will keep you sane. Without them, you’ll possibly forget that you are.

Without a solid daily routine, it’s easy to get distracted and lose focus on what really needs to be done.

So, do yourself a favour and plan out your day.

Factor in time around your scheduled lectures and zoom meetings for note-taking, replying to emails, completing assignments, readings, group work and whatever else you need to do. 

Put together a ‘to-do list’ at the start of every day.

It can help to list everything you want to accomplish, including “eat breakfast,” brush teeth,” “cut own bangs,” etc.

Even ticking off these small, minor tasks helps and will give you a sweet dopamine rush, keeping you on your productive, merry way!

person using macbook pro on bed

Cut Out Distractions

The internet is an alluring feast of digestible garbage, and that’s a fact! 

However, very little of that garbage will help you pass your next exam, and a whole lot of it will only hinder your success.

If you’re struggling to stay off social media, try blocking those sites using an app during your study hours or simply keeping your phone on ‘Airplane mode.’

You can schedule website blocks using software like Cold Turkey.

Fret not, however; those tempting time-wasting sites will be accessible once again in your allotted free time.

white printer paper beside silver laptop computer

Communicate

Remote learning can often make you feel cut off from the rest of the world and the ones you love, and feelings of isolation can easily cause us to fall into an unmotivated slump. 

The truth is, we need others to keep us energized and motivated.

In fact, maintaining regular contact with your school lecturers and classmates is a lifeline connecting you to the external world and a key to keeping on track while doing your work from home.

Stay engaged and active in lectures by contributing questions and ideas instead of just putting yourself on mute and cruising along without paying any attention.

Stay present, and I promise you, you’ll get a lot more in return.

If you’re really struggling with your new set up and impacting your work, don’t hesitate to talk to your professors or student support teams.

If they know what’s going on, they can offer help and suggestions on making your remote learning as seamless as possible.

man in black leather jacket sitting on brick wall holding smartphone

Create a designated workspace

Your bed may feel like a soft, plump marshmallow, but reclined inertia doesn’t lead to optimal productivity. 

In other words, ensure you’ve got an organized desk, a comfortable chair and only the relevant resources at your disposal. 

Suppose you’re lucky enough to have a separate room to work in, even better.

But just having an established work/study space, even in your bedroom, is going to help get you into the right state of mind for getting things done.

turned off laptop computer on top of brown wooden table

Do other things

Factoring in time for other activities is essential for keeping your mind refreshed and preventing you from getting too restless. In fact, if you’re only staring at a screen from morning until night, every day of the week, it won’t be long before you start to feel like you’re losing your mind.

Try indoor workouts, walking outside, cooking, baking, taking a bath, reading a novel, writing in your journal, painting, knitting, sewing, crotchet, playing the trumpet (while being mindful of the neighbours, of course.) 

The key is to do anything to give yourself a break from studying or working relentlessly.

Try to get away from a screen for portions of your day, especially in the evening time. This will help you wind down, allowing you to sleep better and simply giving your mind proper rest from all the online work or study. 

Activities that involve using your hands can be extremely meditative too, and getting in some exercise will improve your mood immeasurably.

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person reading book on brown wooden table taken at daytome

Be Kind to Yourself

Finally, it is paramount that you treat yourself with kindness and compassion, especially when you’re isolated from the rest of the world.

Practice self-care, try meditation or relaxing yoga poses, treat yourself to those small things you’ve earned, or even binge-watch some terrible TV from time to time, so long as it helps you unwind.

Maybe you’re not working at 100% capacity, but that’s OK.

It’s a challenging time for everyone, and we’re all just doing the best we can with the best we’ve got.

New Year, New You – 5 Best Self-Improvement Books To Read In 2021

Look for the best self-improvement books of 2021? Check out our list of the top 5 best ones to help you make the most of the New Year.

As we roll into the New Year, many of us are faced with trying to accomplish our resolutions.

Maybe you’ve decided to quit a bad habit. Or maybe start eating better. Or maybe just to try and be the best possible version of yourself that you can be. Either way, self-improvement isn’t easy.

best self-improvement books

In fact, getting motivated to make changes in your life is hard. And to redefine who you truly are can be one of the hardest things you’ll ever do.

So, with that in mind, I’ve decided to put together a list of the best, most-inspiring self-improvement books you’ll find in bookstores this new year.

Let’s jump in!

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck By Mark Manson

Do you ever feel like you care too much about things too much or other people who simply don’t care about you?

Then, The Subtle Art Of Not Giving a F*ck might just be the best book for you to add to your list this year.

Review: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck - Release Hypnosis - best self-improvement books

As the second book from author and blogger, Mark Manson, upon its initial release The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A F*ck quickly became a best seller.

Manson argues that mindless positivity isn’t helpful or practical in any way. Instead, the book argues that not caring so much is the first step in freeing up your mindset.

In fact, the book exemplifies that life’s struggles, rather than its triumphs are what give it meaning and purpose.

So if you want to learn to let go, make sure to add this book to your list!

You Are A Badass: How To Stop Doubting Your Greatness And Start Living An Awesome Life By Jen Sincero

You Are A Badass is a book written for anyone that wants to revolutionize their life. Written by Jen Sincero, You Are A Badass is an awesome read for virtually anyone this New Year.

You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome  Life best self-improvement books

Served up in 27 short and sweet chapters, Sincero offers plenty of sage, wise advice through her inspiring stories, and simple self-help exercises.

This book will help you identify and reverse any self-sabotaging behaviours that you currently have. And help you learn to disregard your fears.

So that you can learn to love yourself and create the life that you truly want to live.

The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself By Michael A. Singer

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to free yourself from your own personal boundaries? Or, what you should be doing every day to help yourself discover inner peace?

These are the precise type of questions that Michael A. Singer sets out to help you answer in The Untethered Soul.

In fact, his book seeks to help you revolutionize your relationship with your own inner being, as well as the outside world around you.

For this, Singer helps you put an end to any emotional habits you may have that are limiting your consciousness, as well as your true potential.

Meditation on the Untethered Soul - a journey beyond yourself (15 minutes)  - YouTube

Through traditional mindfulness and meditation, this book teaches the importance of personal development. Which will allow you to dwell in the present. While also enabling you to let go of the painful thoughts, memories, and habits that hold you back.

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business By Charles Duhigg

Good or bad, each and every one of us is the summation of dozens of daily, weekly, and monthly habits. But how many of us have really stopped to think about why we do the things that we do?

In The Power Of Habit By Charles Duhigg, you’ll explore the science behind habits. Why they are created, what they mean, and how to break free of their habitual reign.

The Power of Habit - Penguin Random House Common Reads

According to Duhigg, the “Habit Loop” is the pattern held in our minds that govern all forms of habit, no matter how good or bad.

Therefore, understanding the three main components of the “Habit Loop” is essential to breaking free and changing negative habits into positive habits.

So, if you’ve ever found yourself dealing with habits that you find impossible to change. Then, I’d definitely recommend checking out The Power Of Habit to help you make the most of 2021.

The Happiness Project By Gretchen Rubin

As a New York Times Bestseller, The Happiness Project has been referred to as an enlightening, laugh-out-loud book that’s sure to help you learn a thing or two about happiness.

The book follows Gretchen Rubin’s year-long experiment as she attempts to learn how to create true happiness in her life.

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin | Book & Quote Monster

Woven together along with plenty of humour and glimpses into Rubin’s real life, her book explores dozens of age-old anecdotes and lessons from pop-culture to see what they really mean about habit, happiness, and the simplicity of human nature.

Best Self-Improvement Books 2021

While there’s nothing wrong with simply being the person that you already are, there’s something inspiring about those who strive to improve themselves.

Unfortunately, this is often easier said than done.

That’s why we’ve put together this list of 5 amazing self-help books that have been written specifically to help you do just that.