Dealing with college and all the changes it brings can be quite stressful. Managing a career (or at least a steady job) during the studies is even more difficult. However, it can be done. This experience can be more than just a grind. It’s also a way to become more familiar with the industries related to your field of studies. But more importantly, it will test your commitment and willingness to work hard. The key to balancing these tasks is to make detailed plans and stick to them no matter what.
Having a daily to-do list is crucial for having a productive and organized day. It’s a common mistake to focus only on long-term plans as that way a lot of daily obligations fall through the cracks. It’s also a bad idea to divide the tasks evenly, that is, dedicating the same amount of time to your work and studies each day. Prioritizing is a much more efficient method – write down the most important tasks of the day (preferably the night before) and tackle them one by one, according to their importance.
Leaving room for classes
First of all, inform both your professors and your employer that you’re a part-time worker (and a working student). That way, everyone involved will know that some changes in the schedule will be necessary. Have in mind that exams are going to be particularly stressful, so make sure that your work hours so as they do not affect your study time. It’s important that the studies take precedence over work. It’s perfectly fine to ask a friend for help. For students – that will probably mean borrowing notes and for coworkers changing shifts every once in a while.
Picking the right job
There are two ways of choosing the job if you’re a college student. It could be something related to your studies that you can turn into a serious career later on. This is a much more demanding option, but it has its obvious benefits. The other way to go, which is more common, is to find jobs that don’t require too much time and previous experience. That way the job will generate some income and still leave you with enough time to study and have a life.
Tutoring is an the most popular choice for students, especially if it’s in the area related to their field of studies. It’s a part-time gig which allows you to organize the tutoring schedule to suit your college commitments. It’s also something that looks good on a resume and gives students a real taste of what teaching jobs are like. These days tutoring can be done online, mostly via Skype, which makes the whole thing even easier (and possibly more lucrative).
Companies need detailed information about their products and most importantly the way customers interact with it. Taking paid surveys is a good way to provide that information and earn some extra money. The work can be done from home, at your own pace, and since it doesn’t drain too much energy, your studies can remain your primary concern. Of course, during the slow months, students could take on more surveys each day and catch up on the work for which they didn’t have the time during the exam season.
There’s always work for nannies and babysitters and it’s paid pretty well. It isn’t a demanding job, especially if you’re good with children and you manage to find a family with which you will get along. Work hours and schedules are usually open for negotiation, which is great for students. Besides, this job also looks pretty good on a resume because it proves that you’re a responsible person with great people skills.
Taking time off
This kind of work pace can take its toll even on a young person. It’s imperative to take breaks and find some time to treat yourself. This means both having enough time for some relaxing and fun activity each day and, in the long run – setting aside a few weekends or more to do nothing and just unwind. It might seem unnatural to schedule your personal time, but it will ensure that you actually have it. Also, it might happen that both work and studies suffer a bit because of such an intense schedule – be prepared for it and accept it’s a part of life.
Work and studies can go hand in hand if you’re organized and committed to the goals you’ve set. In the end, working while studying can prove to be more than useful in finding a future career and job opportunities.