Tag Archives | part-time

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There’s no denying it. College is expensive. For most students, it’s not feasible to put work on hold for four years just to earn a degree. Even if you could get by without extra income, working during your time at college is a great way to help shape your career trajectory, build a professional network, and even help you decide what classes will be most valuable for you.

But working while studying can also be risky. How do you balance the demands of the classes you’re paying for with the requirements of the job that’s paying you? What kind of jobs for students are available, and what should you be looking for in a student job? Here are some tips and tricks for striking just the right balance.

1. Know Your Limits

Earning a college degree is important, because it increases your chances of landing a high-paying job and building a successful career down the line. In order to pay for college, there is no doubt that you must take up a job as soon as possible. However, if you’ve just arrived on campus for the first time, now is probably not the best time to be looking for a job. Take some time to get acclimated to your new schedule and figure out the demands of your class load.

Not only will this keep your stress levels from getting too high—no one wants eight hours of homework to complete after a shift at work—but prospective employers will appreciate your forethought when you come to them knowing exactly when you aren’t available, and when you may need extra time for exams or other class obligations.

2. Make It Count

The transition from high school to college can be tricky. All of a sudden, you’ve gone from learning facts and figures to building the skills you’re going to need in the workplace…and you may not have any idea what kind of workplace you’re looking for yet! While there are probably plenty of jobs for students right on campus—great when you’re short on time or unable to commute—it’s also a good idea to use your student employment to examine different career paths.

Many highly successful professionals, from Anderson Cooper to Steve Jobs, explored a variety of career options through student jobs and internships. Some ended up pursuing those first jobs further, while others realized they were better suited to other paths. Use your own student job to explore!

3. Mentors Matter

One of the most valuable aspects of a student job is the opportunity for mentoring. Working professionals have so much to offer students just getting their feet wet, and many are eager for the opportunity to share.

Once you have an idea of what kind of field you want to work in and are pursuing related job opportunities and internships, be sure to ask questions about whether there’s an existing structure in place for mentorship, or whether you would have the opportunity to work closely with more senior professionals to get a sense of what the work is really like.

Meet with different potential mentors and try to determine who can support and challenge you as you learn and grow.

4. Be Upfront with Your Employer

It may be only a “college job,” but remember that your boss can either be a great reference or an awkward topic to discuss with your next employer. Always be honest with your employer. If you know you’re only going to be available during the school year and not during the summer, that should come up during your interview.

If your class schedule for the next semester changes and you’re unable to pick up as many hours, it’s better to let your boss know right away rather than have to revise the schedule later, or, even worse, missing shifts or turning up late.

Keep in mind that not all employers are flexible, especially if they don’t frequently hire students. Be sure to discuss issues like this during the hiring process. If an employer isn’t willing to occasionally work with you for things like exams or lab times, it might be best to keep looking.

5. Be Professional

All too often, students fall into the habit of thinking of their work as “just a student job,” something to kill time and make a little extra money while waiting to start their “real job.”

The truth is, however, that your student job is practice for the real world. The habits you develop now are the ones that will follow you throughout your professional career, so if you flout dress codes, turn up late, and forget to call in, not only will it result in a bad reference, but they’re habits that will be hard to break once you finally land that “real job.”


Ready to start submitting applications? Your first stop should be your school’s career counseling or professional development center. They’ll likely have extensive lists of jobs for students, as well as internships and career mentoring opportunities.

They can also help you hone your resume or curriculum vitae and practice your interviewing techniques. With a bit of searching and a little luck, you’ll find a student job that not only helps pay the bills, but also gives you a toehold in your career long before you graduate!

This article was contributed by guest author Amanda Wilks.


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Is it possible for students to focus on GPA scores when they have a part-time job? Even though it is a major distracting factor, a job can have a positive influence on the studying process. It is all about prioritizing. If you put your studies first, you will get the results you want. On the other hand, working too hard can lead to wearing oneself out and therefore bad grades. There are many things to consider before making the decision to get a job while studying in college. These pros and cons will help you make up your mind!


Stable income

This is the first benefit that comes to mind. It is a great opportunity to start earning money. Students often complain about their financial situation and getting a part-time job can fix it. Take this decision seriously and try to understand if you are ready to take on this kind of responsibility. Do not look for a job with the sole intent to earn money. Think carefully about the responsibilities you will have and evaluate your skills objectively.

Ability to spend money wisely

Having a part-time job teaches students not only to earn, but to spend money as well. It is very tempting to buy all those little things you’ve always wanted now that you’ve received your first paycheck. But it is wiser to start saving. Life is full of surprises. You never know what you might need that money for in the future. It is more practical to have some savings than exchange your remuneration for a fading instant joy.

Improved time management skills

Always being late is not a good characteristic for an employee to have. It is a sign of disrespect and irresponsible attitude. Some students think that there is no way to combine classes and work without sacrificing something. There is a constant dilemma of skipping classes to be on time for your shift. To solve this problem, you need a job with a flexible schedule. Discuss the schedule with your manager and ask if there is a chance to adapt your work shifts according to it. Have a study plan and manage your time taking it into consideration. The tight schedule will help you to understand the real value of time and spend it wisely.

Valuable experience

No matter what kind of job students can find, there is always an opportunity to get useful experience for your future career. The working environment can improve your communication skills. A candidate who can easily find common ground with others has more chances of landing a job interview than the one who does not. Your first job can teach you to solve conflicts, find non-trivial solutions to all kinds of problems, and be more responsible. All of these qualities will come in handy after the graduation.


The people you get to know while working might have a tremendous impact on your future professional development. You never know who will be your lucky ticket to the business world. Be polite and try to maintain good relationships with your colleagues and managers. It is often a friend of a friend who knows someone and can arrange a job interview for you.


Bureaucracy issues for foreign students

Foreign students will have to go through more stages before they can get a job. They will need to fill out paperwork to prove that they are students and have permission to work. As a rule, such permission does not give foreign students the right to get a part-time job somewhere in a private business sector, so your college is one of the few places you can take your chances to find a job.

Constant exhaustion

Be ready to face the unwelcoming reality of sleep deprivation. Being tired all the time is an annoying component of working. Your time management skills might have nothing to do with it. Putting too much on your shoulders has its drawbacks and exhaustion is one of them. If you see that this feeling does not go away, think about the health issues you might have. Your health is by far more important than getting a salary.

Lack of time

The sad truth about having a job while you are still in college is the need to reject the invitations from your friends because there is no time left for fun. That is not entirely true, but you may meet up with friends less often than you did before.

Thoughts of leaving college

This might be one of the negative consequences of earning money so early. Students do not see any sense in going to college if there is a possibility to get paid without a diploma. Although there are some examples of people without college degrees starting a successful business, it is better to have one just in case.

This article was contributed by guest author Peter Druker.

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In the summer of 2014, I had just finished my first year at university. Commuting was helping to save the family money, but it left me with little money for myself after I had to quit my job to accommodate the lost time travelling. I had worked at a Shoppers Drug Mart ten minutes away from my house, and leaving not only lost me my discount, but the ease that went into working every day.

I wanted to try and gain a position that had more to do with the profession I wanted to go into, which was being a doctor. I also wanted the ease that came with working close to home. So I opted to apply for a numerous amount of jobs – probably too many. I’ve heard from many since then that if you are applying to too many jobs at one time at the mall, things circulate and its likely to reflect poorly on you. I probably applied to about 10 retail jobs at the mall, but still holding out for an opportunity in research, I applied to about 10 more that I found on a school hiring website.

I found that using the resources given to me by my school was a huge advantage to the position I ended up receiving. You are technically paying for these services, so it is worth it to give them a chance. I would never have known where to get a research position after being in my first year – I barely knew where the library was – but using this school resource was a huge asset. Anyway, I had three callbacks from about 20 applications (such is life sometimes). I had a callback from a clothing store in the mall and two callbacks for research positions in psychiatry and in biology.

I ended up interviewing for the psychiatry position and the clothing store position, because the biology lab position ended up not working with my schedule. I was taking summer courses at the time and didn’t want to have something with too many hours. The research position was great because it was part of a program at U of T where there are a limited number of hours, which made it flexible for students. I had never worked at a retail store before so I was a little bit confused in the interview. Do I know what to do with inventory? No, I don’t know how to work a POS system.

It turned out that that job at the mall was the first job for which I had ever been interviewed and rejected. I always prepare well for my interviews – going over common answers that are typically asked, picking out my dress, relaxing myself before I get in there. I come with my cover letter, resume and references ready. It just eases my mind so I can perform my best. I guess my lack of experience kind of undershot my chances, so I ended up taking the position in psychiatry.

I’ve been working in that job for two years and I’ve learned a lot and made plenty of great friends. The fact that it is flexible helped me balance school and work and allowed me to meet different psychiatrists and employees at CAMH. The key to finding a good job is making sure that your resume is short and highlights all of your relevant accomplishments, preparing for the interview as well as following up after the interview, and just making sure that you are prepared every step of the way. You’d be surprised at the kinds of jobs you can find when you’re prepared!

Image by arttabel, pixabay.com

Image by arttabel, pixabay.com

You may not think much about jobs you’re pursuing now, beyond the money you get paid. However, even as a teen, you should be planning for the future. Instead of choosing just any job, focus on finding something that will actually teach you marketable skills and can later be used to gain even better positions. Here are a few great part-time jobs for you to look into:

One good choice for a part-time job as a student is being a tutor. It allows you to sharpen both your learning and teaching skills and can be invaluable in acquiring experience that can be put toward a future teaching position.

Web Designer
One of the largest pieces of today’s economy focuses on information technology. If you want a career in IT, writing code and designing complex computer systems, you should get started early. Learning how to design websites or making your own monetized YouTube channel can teach you skills to set you on your way to a career in tech.

Mission Center or Shelters
Obtaining a position at a mission center or shelter can help you build valuable work experience or add to the volunteer section on your resume, especially if you’re looking to forge a career in the non-profit industry. Places like Union Gospel Mission in Twin Cities have many avenues to choose from, like homeless shelters, addiction workshops, and daycares.

Internships are usually thought of as something you do during college. However, you can certainly obtain one earlier if you wish. While the prospect of working with little to no pay won’t sound all that great to many teens, internships are one sure-fire way to obtain experience that will look great on a resume. Internships allow you to obtain contacts and start networking at major companies of interest to you that can be taken advantage of later.

Animal Shelter Worker
If you are interested in becoming a veterinarian or veterinarian assistant in the future, try to obtain a part-time position at a local animal shelter. The experience you get caring for animals in such a setting will add relevant experience to your resume and give you a first-hand look at whether it’s the career you want.

Junior Reporter or Newspaper Columnist
Most towns have small local newspapers. These papers constantly need new blood, and this is an opportunity to test your skills in writing, organization and reporting. Try writing a sports column or movie reviews to test out where your strengths lie. Working for a newspaper can certainly be the start of a lifelong career in journalism.

Overall, just because you’re young doesn’t mean the jobs you hold now have to be meaningless. Many different part-time positions can supply you with valuable skills and experience that can be applied later on in life.

This article was contributed by guest author Brooke Chaplan.