While you’re studying, you may find yourself wanting or needing to get a part-time job. Most students work part-time when they are studying, whether it be to earn some extra cash, or to gain relevant work experience. If you’re working part-time while studying at university, we’ve got 5 tips to share with you that can make having a job and balancing your studies more manageable. Let’s dive right in!
Be Realistic About Your Availability
Depending on what and where you study, you may only be required to be in classes or lectures for half of the week. Looking at the blank spaces in our uni timetables, it can be easy to think that we have all the spare time in the world. This can give us the illusion that we have more time to spend working than we think! Unfortunately, this can backfire badly when we’re applying for jobs.
Be realistic – you need to know how much time you’re going to need for studying and doing assignments outside of just attending lectures. If you are studying full-time, think of your studies as a 40-hour work week, just like any other full-time job. You can then be realistic at what hours you have left over in the week to spend time working.
Be upfront about this when you apply for jobs and go to interviews, so that your employer is aware of your schedule and can’t add you to extra shifts. You can quickly overwork and burn out, which is not a good thing for you or your employer. If you think you may have more time to work earlier in the semester than later on when things start to get hectic, be upfront about this as well and give dates to potential employers so that they are fully aware of your availability.
Try to Get a Job in Your Field Of Study
Unfortunately, you aren’t going to get your dream job in your field while you’re only half way through your degree. Everyone has to start somewhere! However, it is a good idea to apply for part-time work that’s within the industry or that links in with your field of study. This could be a paid internship, a tutoring role, or anything else that relates to your chosen field.
Having a part-time job that relates to your degree not only gives you an edge, but it can also be extremely valuable when it comes time to graduate and find a full-time role. You will already have some experience under your belt to add to your CV, giving you an edge on all the other graduates.
Some courses offer work experience papers within the degree. Ask your tutors or look online to see if your course has an industry lead paper. If your job can help you towards completing a paper, you can easily kill two birds with one stone and save yourself a lot of time and stress.
Finally, some courses may even have industry partnerships that will help you get a job. For example, at Crown Institute we offer a Study and Work programme. This allows students to work at one of our partnering companies in the travel and tourism industry, as well as other industries, to gain relevant work experience while they study. You can gain professional training in employment skills and your work experience is guaranteed to be paid.
Make the Most Out of Study Breaks
We’ve all been there – you want to relish your student life for as long as possible. We get it. After all, this is the last time in your life you will ever get two weeks off every 6 weeks and all of summer to go on holiday. However, study breaks are a good opportunity to get extra shifts where you can and work more hours. You will find yourself needing the extra cash for when your studies get stressful and you have to prioritise.
Christmas break is an especially good time to pick up extra shifts at your job, as it’s easily the busiest time of the year in most industries. If you put your hand up and offer yourself for more time during Christmas and other breaks, your employers will probably be more than happy to give you more shifts.
Plan Out Your Weeks
Planning is key to not falling behind, especially when it’s closer to exams or when assignments are due. There is nothing worse than thinking you have all the time in the week to study, only to leave it to the last minute and then be stressing out about exams and assignments while you’re at work.
Planning can help avoid this. Invest in a good weekly planner – whether it’s an app, a book or your online calendar. Block out hours each day when you have class and work, and then block out an efficient number of hours to study.
The next part about planning is sticking to your plan! This may sound obvious but is harder to do than you would think. Try to motivate yourself so that you don’t procrastinate, and you will feel less stressed overall.
Most Importantly: Don’t Forget that Your Studies Come First!
Once you get a job, it can be so easy to get excited about making money and forget to prioritise your studies. However, it’s important to understand that studying is your number one priority. This is what’s going to propel you into much better work opportunities in the future.
You don’t want to stay at the same level on the corporate ladder forever and getting a degree can leap you steps closer to getting your dream job. In order to get there, you can’t lose sight of the necessary steps towards reaching your career goals.
Gain Work Experience During Your Studies at Crown Institute
If you’re considering working while you study, our Study + Work programme may be the perfect fit for you. It offers professional training to prepare you for employment and customer service, and then sets you up for a guaranteed paid work experience at one of our many partnering companies. You’ll get to gain real-life experience in the workforce, while you finish your degree. Our partners understand the importance of your studies and will not only push you towards having the best working and studying balance available but will offer you experiences that can propel your learning.
To talk to us about applying for the Study and Work programme, contact us today.