Let's face it... the "real world" is only a few years away. Greek life, parties, and that annoying professor all won't matter once you graduate college and step out to truly start your life. Maybe it's your parents, professors, or other loved ones hounding you with talks of internships, jobs, and other real-world things.
Yes, college is the time to get serious and start thinking about the rest of your life, but you will never get that summer of freshman year back. I'm sure most people can agree that when they look back on their lives, they want to do so with no regrets.
In old age, wouldn't you rather think "I did all that I wanted to," instead of "I did all that was required of me." The summer can be an especially stressful time for college students, as there is a surplus of us and only a small number of internships and job available. It has gotten so competitive that if you don't plan to score one even a year ahead, you are behind the game. And if you land one that you aren't truly passionate about, you can find yourself spending the summer unhappy.
Why do something that you hate, when you can spend that time in a way of your choosing? Take the summer and do something you want to do and worry about the serious stuff when you need to.
Personally, I am choosing to spend my summer working at my beloved sleep away camp as a counselor. Camp is my happy place and has been a second home to me since I was 10 years old. For me, there is no other way I would want to spend my summer, since I have done so at camp for eight years.
If you feel similar to me, consider this to be something you choose. If not, there are so many ways to spend your summer how you want to.
If you do a simple google search, there are so many different programs for college students wanting to travel and see the world. You can even go stay with family or visit college friends in a different state. The options are unlimited if you allow yourself to take control of the time and make it for what you want it to be. The point I am trying to make is not saying don't intern or get a job at all.
What I am saying is do so if it is because you want to, and not because someone else is telling you. Make sure it is something that you are happy to do and not just because you have to fill the time or feel forced to conform to.
Thirty years from now, spending one summer as a camp counselor probably won't make a huge difference in your life. At the end of the day, this is your time and you should be spending it how you want. The real world may only be a few years away but let it stay there. So take the summer and make it the summer of you!