I've often heard students pursuing their degrees saying, "I wish I could have learned this". When applying for a job, companies have a brief look at your portfolio. Not only companies but also universities providing courses post-graduation have look at an individual's portfolio. Hence, it is essential to focus on your portfolio and build one which will stand out from the rest.
Learn new skills and build projects
Continuous learning is the minimum requirement for success in any field. Keep learning new skills at regular intervals. Suppose you're interested in web development or app development then start with its basics, build some basic projects and go for advanced learning and build advanced projects. As you see yourself progressing, start building projects which are based on real-life problem-solving. If you're stuck somewhere never hesitate to ask for help. You'll grow as you keep learning by making mistakes and improving. For learning new tech skills you can refer Udemy, Coursera, Udacity.
Apply for internships
Experience matters a lot
After learning some skills and building personal projects it's time for working on some ongoing projects. You can start applying for internships in companies. Internships are the best way to gain industry experience. You might have to appear for an interview and some test rounds. Internships can be paid and unpaid depending upon the companies.
As a developer, you can start freelancing. As a student, it will help to generate extra revenue and help you to enhance your skills. Start with small projects, build them properly. Once you're confident enough then go for building medium and advanced-level projects. Freelancing will definitely add value to the portfolio. Projects built as a freelancer shows your confidence and proficiency in that skill.
Along with outstanding coding skills a developer must have good writing skills. Being a content write gives you an additional advantage over other candidates. Writing blogs is really good practice. Content writing is an amazing mind exercise.
Writing content is a test of your creativity. Writing a weekly blog will enhance your writing skills and help you to maintain a blog page. Maintaining a blog page is a really helpful and add-on for a portfolio.
Publish research paper
If you're in college and doing some kind of research on some project or topic you should publish your own research paper. If you're applying for further studies in some top universities then this is really helpful. This is an extra point which will attract universities and companies. Your portfolio will look diverse and will stand out from the rest.
Join a social service committee
Joining a social service committee shows your concern towards society. You're not secluded in your own world, instead, it shows that you're also bothered about your society. This becomes helpful for future studies when you're applying to some top universities. If they have a look at your portfolio then the social service factor is advantageous.
Hence, I would end this post by saying there are a lot of other factors, but these are the ones that I found to be prominent. If you some other factors then please do share them. Please do put down your thoughts in the comment section below.