However, for those looking to get ahead in business and improve their professional skills, the chiming of school bells might be a more appropriate dream than the nostalgic ringing of the neighborhood ice cream truck.
Many colleges in Indiana offer summer courses for adults, where you can learn everything from yoga to yodeling. It's a great way to meet new people and learn skills that you may not have time to study during the rest of the year.
While many schools offer individual courses, others provide the opportunity to begin earning your degree during the summer. Oftentimes, students find it easiest to enroll before the fall rush begins, gradually easing into their studies.
Because summer is a popular vacation season, summer school may not have been an option for adults in years past. However, many colleges now offer ways to combine in-class and online learning, making it possible to log on and conduct your coursework over the Internet.
Rather than reading your mass-market popular fiction paperback at the beach, you could log onto your laptop and begin working your way through a management degree. Or, after you've sputtered through the Redwoods or past Old Faithful in your family's trusty minivan, you can log on for a quick economics lesson in your hotel room (and perhaps pick up a few vacation budgeting tips along the way).
That may not sound like a vacation to some people, and summer courses may not be for everyone. However, many universities offer concentrated courses that meet just one night a week, leaving you with six more nights to enjoy your free time.
So, why should you begin your education this summer? Here are a few of the tangible benefits.
* Knowledge you can apply on the job. At many of today's forward-thinking universities, you'll study more than just theories; you'll be able to focus on how they are applied in the real world.
Students are encouraged to discuss the problems that instructors and classmates face in their jobs, often presenting solutions that can be tested on the job the following day.
* Networking. Because classes for working adults are typically filled with professionals, summer courses are a great way to boost your networking skills. Chances are you'll meet classmates from a wide range of industries with a common goal of self-improvement through education.
* Career advancement. Studies continue to show that higher degrees equal higher paychecks. New information from the U.S. Census Bureau reinforces the value of a college education: Workers 18 and older with a high school diploma earn $27,915, while those with a bachelor's degree earn almost double -- an average of $51,206 a year. Workers with an advanced degree do even better, making an average of $74,602.
In a competitive job market, employers are searching for characteristics that set you apart from other applicants for hire or promotion. A higher degree is a great way to make that distinction.
So, as you listen to the sounds of summer in your neighborhood -- crickets chirping outside and late night baseball games on the radio -- think about spending one evening a week investing in your future by earning a higher degree. It may make those lazy days of summer a bit more meaningful.
Simon Lumley is vice president of Indiana operations and Indianapolis Campus Director for University of Phoenix. University of Phoenix offers accessible higher education options uniquely tailored for Indianapolis' working business professionals. Reach him at (317) 585-8610 or email@example.com. For more information, log onto www.phoenix.edu/Indianapolis.