4 answers

What strategies help to balance school and a part time job in college?

Updated San Jose, California

I am a high school student who will be going to college soon. Depending on where I go, I may need a part time job to afford tuition and living expenses. Past or present working undergraduates, how hard has it been to balance school with work and what are some strategies that would make life manageable as a working student? #college #time-management #happiness #work-study

4 answers

Ben’s Answer

Updated Menlo Park, California

Hi Morgan!

As a fellow broke college kid, I understand where you are coming from. I work two jobs part-time: CareerVillage and Abercrombie. (However, if you can avoid it don't work two jobs. I'm lucky because my jobs are pretty accommodating to my schedule. This rarely happens when you work two jobs.) But it us totally is doable to work part time and be in college.

Make college your first priority-Tell your manager, "I'm a college student, I can only work around these times Insert the times when you are free. At Abercrombie we have a employee website where we are available to change our availability by logging into our own accounts. Also, if need to work change your work hours or take time off for whatever ever reason, let your managers know ahead of time ASAP. Most managers will understand and will be accommodating (especially if you have an on campus job.)

Manage your time This is pretty obvious but there are a lot of things that go into this. Use tools like Google calendar, your phone's calendar or an actual physical planner to help budget your time. For example, l do social media for CareerVillage. I will knock that out in the morning during my gap period, I queue up all their social media ahead of time. Then when my gap is over, I will go back to class. After classes are over, I'll spend some time studying sometimes its a lot, sometimes its not a lot. I will work night shifts ( on Thursdays and Fridays) at Abercrombie if they assign me them. Also I work on the weekends I open up my availability to work whatever shift I can at Abercrombie( sometimes its morning, afternoon, or night,) they let me know on my schedule they give to me each week. So ask yourself, "how much of my free time am I going to dedicate to my studies, work, and my personal/social life?" Don't overload yourself with school and work ( it doesn't end well I've had to pull several all nighters before, its not fun.) Find the right balance.

Sometimes you have to sacrifice your social life. -I've remember getting invited to some parties on a Friday night and I couldn't make it due to work. Its ok. There's always going to be another party. Sometimes you can make it, sometimes you can't. Its not the end of the world. I do recommend you still maintain your social life. Don't be buried in your work and school, do some things you like so you don't go insane haha.

Work the early morning shifts or the super late shifts. - Look sometimes you're only free in the early morning or at night. It sucks waking up super early. It sucks working super late. Most people hate these shifts and don't want them so if you're free at those times see if you can take them, they are available. Take them sometimes and put some extra money in your pockets.

I hope this was helpful! Feel free to reach out if you have anymore questions about managing you time let me know. Also, if you need help figuring how to get a part time job or how to navigate the crazy world of retail let me know. More than happy to help! Good luck!

-Ben

Troy’s Answer

Updated Austin, Texas

Congrats, I'm so happy to hear you made the choice to go to college! I know what you are thinking about to go through and it may sound simple but two strategies I highly recommend are having lots of fun, and getting in proper sleep. I say these because the fun part with co-workers, people on campus, in class, will only help you gain friendships, pass the time, and will come in handy when you need help in a class or with anything. The sleep I say because since you'll be a busy person which is good, that sometimes the pressure of both work and upcoming papers, exams, etc can weigh a lot on a person. So relaxing, taking it one day at a time and really making sure you get good sleep (at least most days) will help you in your success. Make the most of both experiences and remember if it seems lousy or like it's not paying back right away that in time it will you have to believe it. Plus you'll be gaining lots of experience! :)

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Nice advice. Thank you so much!
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Anytime sweet Morgan!! :)

Ken’s Answer

Updated Cleveland, Ohio

Hi Morgan!

Here are two tips from people who know more than me about these areas:

This will give you some good tips on how to reduce college costs: http://www.educationplanner.org/students/paying-for-school/ways-to-pay/reduce-college-costs.shtml

This will tell you about balancing work and college: https://www.unigo.com/in-college/college-experience/creating-a-workschool-balance-a-college-student-perspective

Best of luck! Let me know if and how this is of help. Keep me posted. I would like to follow your progress.

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Thank you! These resources will definitely be able to come to my aid. :)
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HI! I have some more tips, but I have to put them in a separate answer block, as they are over 800 characters in length.

Rachel’s Answer

Updated

<span style="background-color: transparent;">You have to set a routine for yourself and stick to it for the most part. Once you get into the groove of a routine it will be much easier for you to manage your time and have enough time for everything you need to do (including relaxing). Make yourself to-do lists on a weekly basis, use Google calendar or a planner to keep track of events, deadlines, and due dates. In addition to setting a routine and sticking to it, plan out relaxing activities into your day. Or set aside a time, after everything is done for the day, that you can have "me" time. I have also personally found it essential to not only find time for myself but also make use of that time in a way that is best for me and my holistic wellness. I have found the HeadSpace app to be an essential tool in helping me relax and generally feel more relaxed throughout the day, Guided meditation, even if you have a busy schedule, will make you feel more at ease and relaxed throughout the day as a whole (not just when you have the time to relax and focus on that "me" time).</span>

<span style="background-color: transparent;">Set a routine.Use Google Calendar.Set aside Me TimeWrite weekly to-do lists and use a planner.Find a peaceful and restful activity that will help you feel relaxed.</span>