It depends on the activity and how it either relates to what you do during the school year or a talent. For example, athletes might be involved in summer camps, show cases, leagues and training and how little time for other activities. A student who is looking to major in drama/ acting and is involved in the school's drama club is demonstrating a commitment to that talent or activity. Summers that are used for academic enrichment such as college classes, overseas trips with large organized groups, or spending six weeks on a college /university campus taking SAT prep course, an academic class and cultural field trips are questionable in terms of developing a personal skill or experiencing a new growth in your character. College admission staff members know that the organized camp and the overseas trips all cost money and while those activities look good and kids have a great time they were able to go because of economic resources. The student who worked at a soup kitchen, a hospital, a day care center, as a volunteer at a nursing home or who had there own small summer business is revealing so much more about their character, goals, willingness to give to others and will have learned much about themselves. Summer should be a time to do something that you can not do doing the school year, something that truly interest you and not an activity you think will impress someone. Always be true to yourself. Everyone will have , perhaps, a different view of how the summer should be used, but admission staff know the benefits of volunteer work, working, and continuing an interest that has its roots in the school year.