Counseling Corner: Willowbrook Counseling Department provides ideas for students to have a productive summer

With summer break right around the corner, the Willowbrook Counseling Department offers tips to provide teens with a rejuvenating, yet educational experience.

College visits:
It’s never too early to start visiting colleges! If you are traveling, try to stop by colleges and universities. Set up an official visit, or consider taking a self-guided tour. It’s important for students to visit a variety of schools in different settings/locations, so they can find their “best fit.” Try to meet with students and sit in on a class.

Summer pre-college programs:
There are a number of colleges and universities that offer high school students the opportunity to take courses during the summer on campus. These pre-college summer programs allow students to experience college life. Most programs range from one to eight weeks. You can find programs by visiting college and university websites and typing in “pre-college summer programs.”

Career research:

  • SchooLinks: Students can access SchooLinks at

    • Complete the “Find Your Path Assessment” 

    • Complete the “Would You Rather Assessment” 

    • Explore careers and favorite a career

    • Explore career clusters

    • Update your profile and résumé/brag sheet
  • Occupational Outlook Handbook: Go to to explore careers and job outlook.

  • Informational interviews: Speak with professionals in your career of interest and learn about the field. Ask about necessary education/training, along with the daily responsibilities, to see whether it’s a good fit.

  • Summer employment: Start your career journey by getting a summer job! Visit the Student Services office and look at the job board to learn about available opportunities. You also can visit local businesses and see who is hiring. This is a great time to build your résumé! 

Field trips:

  • Museum trips can be made more meaningful by renting the headset that explains exhibits like a guided tour.

  • National parks provide you with an opportunity to learn about the park’s conservation, history and nature.

  • Zoos provide you with an opportunity to observe and learn about various animals in their natural environment.

  • You can easily create a video project with a phone to document the field trip, which can be shared with family members and friends.


  • Set limits on personal technology use and video game/computer use.

  • Allow time for research and projects, especially for career research.

  • Log into your Khan Academy account, and complete practice questions for upcoming College Board assessments. 

There are many ways to volunteer. Below are several examples.

Visit the Willowbrook Library Media Center, the Villa Park Public Library or the Helen Plum Library (in Lombard), and ask for summer reading recommendations.  

Get some rest and rejuvenate to prepare for the 2023-24 school year!