Should You Get a Job in College?

Hey yall!

By now you’re probably running out of that summer job money you saved up. How did you spend it all so fast?! Who knows, but it happened. We’ve all been there. Now what though? You’re already knee deep in class work, student orgs, parties, and most importantly Netflix. You probably couldn’t even handle a job right now.

WAIT! Getting a job may just save your grades!

Studies show that students who have a job actually have better grades! But how could that happen? If I got a job then I would be spending all of my free time working instead of studying, right? WRONG.

You May Also Like: My Summer Jobs

college-job

Having a job forces you to regulate your time better and actually be more efficient. When you know you work at 5pm Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays then you know that you can’t do homework at that time so you have to get it done before hand. Having a job teaches you time management skills that you otherwise wouldn’t have if a job didn’t force you to acquire them.

At first your job may overwhelm you but that is only because you haven’t found your flow yet. You haven’t found a schedule that works well, YET!

First thing’s first, see if you actually DO have time for a job by planning out a typical week of yours in an hourly schedule:

sched

Here is a gist at what my weekly schedule would look like including sleep, class, and eating without a job. The white space is leisure time/study time freely. Of course this is a rough schedule, I obviously eat more than 1 time a day people. But you see how much free time I essentially have to work a part time job while taking classes. It is relatively easy to fit this into my schedule.

So of course, I got a part time job! I am a cheerleading coach at a local gym in Columbus! I am a second year so having a car is an option to me so I am able to work off campus. If you are a first year at OSU specifically, you cannot have a car so finding an on campus job is your only option, but an on campus job is a wonderful option!

I am a firm believer in having a job while in college because it teaches you so many lessons and skills while you are learning about your future and major. Plus the extra cash is always great for when you want to go shopping, go out to eat, or you need real food!

So a job in general is looking better and better to you right? Good. But what kind of job should you get? There are essentially 100’s of jobs you could get if you include on campus and off campus options. Which one should you narrow your search into? Well that depends on you, what you are looking for, what you want, and what’s available to you.

Let me give you some pros and cons of working on and off campus because I have experience from working both in my 2 years.

On Campus Pros:

– Readily available jobs that are reserved for students
– Close proximity to where you live
– The maximum requirement of hours worked per week is very small, to ease the workload (they understand you are a college student!)
– Flexibility of hours and scheduling
– Meeting new people
– Promotion opportunities (a lot of on campus job are mostly ran by students so the managers etc. are also students!)

On Campus Cons:

– Most of the on campus jobs may be food related (although there are great office/desk jobs available but in lesser quantities)
– The pay is usually minimum wage
– If you live on campus you may be called into work more often because you are close
– Game days are a huge deal on campus so you may be forced to work on game days

Off Campus Pros:

– There are more jobs available that you may be better interested in
– The pay is usually higher
– More networking opportunities for people outside of your college
– More ‘real world’ jobs are available off campus in your city

Off Campus Cons:

– You more than likely will need a vehicle for transportation (so include insurance, gas, parking pass expenses)
– You have to include driving times to your work time that takes out of your study time. (it takes me 45 minutes to get to work, on a good day, due to traffic in Columbus)
– They can be less flexible with hours and scheduling
– The workload may exceed that of an on campus job, making the stress of the job greater.

***

The decision is yours! On campus, or off campus? You have to decide what works best for you, what looks better for you, and what may be your only option at your university. But either way, getting a job is a good investment into your education, mental health, and pockets!

Happy Job Hunting!

my-drifting-desk

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