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How do I manage having a job and college?

I am a senior in high school

+25 Karma if successful
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Subject: Career question for you

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James Constantine’s Answer

Dear Isaiah,

Managing a Job and College

Balancing a job and college can be challenging, but with proper planning and time management, it is achievable. Here are some tips to help you manage both responsibilities effectively:

Create a Schedule: Develop a detailed schedule that includes your classes, work hours, study time, and personal commitments. This will help you visualize your week and allocate time efficiently.

Prioritize Tasks: Identify your most important tasks and prioritize them based on deadlines and importance. Make sure to focus on completing high-priority tasks first to avoid last-minute stress.

Effective Time Management: Utilize tools like calendars, planners, or apps to organize your schedule and set reminders for important deadlines. Break down larger tasks into smaller, manageable chunks to stay on track.

Communicate with Employers and Professors: Keep open communication with your employers and professors about your commitments. Inform them of any scheduling conflicts in advance and discuss potential solutions.

Utilize Resources: Take advantage of resources available to you, such as tutoring services, study groups, or career centers. These resources can provide support and guidance to help you succeed in both work and academics.

Maintain a Healthy Work-Life Balance: It’s essential to prioritize self-care and relaxation amidst your busy schedule. Make time for activities you enjoy, exercise regularly, and ensure you get enough rest.

Set Realistic Goals: Establish achievable goals for both your job and academic performance. Setting realistic expectations will help you stay motivated and focused on your objectives.

Seek Support: Don’t hesitate to seek support from friends, family, or mentors when needed. Surround yourself with a strong support system that can offer encouragement during challenging times.

Stay Organized: Keep your workspace organized and decluttered to minimize distractions while studying or working. A tidy environment can enhance productivity and focus.

Adaptability: Be prepared to adapt to unexpected changes in your schedule or workload. Flexibility is key when managing multiple responsibilities simultaneously.

By implementing these strategies and staying disciplined in your approach, you can successfully navigate the demands of both a job and college without compromising on either aspect of your life.

Top 3 Authoritative Sources Used:

Harvard Business Review
U.S. News & World Report
The Princeton Review

GOD BLESS YOU, RICHLY!
JC.
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Emily’s Answer

Hey Isaiah! Kudos to you for taking on college and a job at the same time. It is not easy but absolutely doable- in fact, I am in college and working full-time right now! Time management is going to be your best friend. Get an agenda or planner and USE IT! Plan out major projects and exams throughout the semester so you can budget time properly. Another tip is to look for online classes- that way you can work at your own pace around your scheduled work hours. Finally, if you get overwhelmed, don't be afraid to ask your boss and/or professors for help.
Thank you comment icon Thank you for the advice ISAIAH
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TRAVIS’s Answer

Some colleges offer student worker jobs as part of student aid. They can work around class schedules usually. If it is a state school those work hours will carry over to your retirement if you continue working in a state agency. Also this is a great entry point for a career at a University if you decide to work there.
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Kaitlyn’s Answer

Heyo!

Although challenging to work and take classes, it's definitely worth it at the end of the day to get a jump start on savings. A lot of companies will work with your school schedule as well, continuing education is super important.

You can always check with the school you are going to attend as well, they may have an employment board. Schools are always looking for interns - some even paid!

When I was in school, I took all morning classes which freed up my afternoons to work. You could also do vice-versa where you work 8-12pm then head to school from 1pm-5pm. Classes are usually offered morning and evenings for the individuals working.

Good luck!!
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Judy’s Answer

While being a senior in high school is challenging enough, adding a job and thoughts of college can become overwhelming. Graduating high-school must remain the priority. Many jobs hire teens and are willing to work with them. McDonald's is a company that offers work credits as well as scholarships. Going to college is a big responsibility. Make sure you have a basic idea what you want to study. It's okay to change. Make sure you understand the financial responsibility as not everyone acquires scholarships or grants. No if you want to live on or off campus. You should ask questions about every class. I just graduated from online college and am seeking a career in the field I graduated from. Never let doubt knock you out. Life gives many choices, think them through carefully. Do not make hasty or rash decisions, as these are more often than not something you may regret later.
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Adrian’s Answer

It might be difficult to juggle both work and school, but there are ways to make it easier. Here are some suggestions:

Make a timetable: Make a plan for the week ahead, including study time, job hours, and class times. You'll have more time for both job and education if you follow this strategy.

Organize your job and school responsibilities by due date and priority. This will save you from becoming flustered at the last minute and help you concentrate.

Maintain open lines of communication between your workplace and your educational institutions. Talk to your teachers about your work schedule and any problems that may arise.

Make the most of your downtime by using it to study, finish off homework, or get yourself ready for impending examinations. Use your downtime wisely, whether it's during a period between courses or a slow period in the office.

Use a planner or electronic calendar to keep track of your tasks, meetings, and due dates. By doing so, you will be able to keep up with your workload and meet any necessary deadlines.

Tend to your own needs. Always put your physical and emotional well-being first. Avoid burnout by getting adequate rest, eating well, exercising, and taking breaks when necessary.
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Kathryn’s Answer

If you are planning for college, I would suggest applying for as many scholarships as possible. There are all kinds of scholarships out there. Here is one link to get you started: https://studentaid.gov/understand-aid/types/scholarships. Having good grades is an advantage, but it's not necessarily required. Talk with your guidance counselor or your favorite teacher about your field of interest and schools that have the field you're interested in. Reach out to your english teacher for help filling out your college and scholarship applications. The idea here is - if you have enough funding to pay for college, maybe stay on campus with room and board - you shouldn't need much extra funding. BUT - if you find that you still need to work while in college, I would seek employment close to college or close to where you live, and I would schedule my classes early and try to schedule work on the weekends. Keep in mind, some colleges provide jobs on-campus to help pay tuition. So that's an option as well. I hope this helps.
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David’s Answer

Hello!

The biggest thing that helped me when I had a job and had college was scheduling ! I focused on what I couldn't change first, whether that's the job schedule or the college courses.

I tried to see if my job was willing to work with me while I was enrolled in certain courses that were only offered at specific times. For the most part it worked out.

Another option might be trying to get a job on campus! That significantly helped with saving money by not having to travel to 2 different places. In regards to time management, you will just have to try to stay strict and on a schedule. You will only have to have a job and go to school simultaneously for a few years, there's an end in sight!
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Lydia’s Answer

Hi there!

College student here who's worked two jobs while going to school full time. You really have to manage time well and come to an understanding that you might not have as much social time with friends and family. I'd recommend making sure you know your work/school schedule and keep a to-do list so you don't get off track.

It's really easy to miss an assignment if you're not looking at the syllabus often (guilty of this!). I worked in customer service up until I was 18, before making the switch to online. After gaining some project management skills, I'm now working as an intern and will be completing a co-op for next school year. If you can find something remote that works with your school schedule, it's a lot easier and less exhausting to handle.

Best of luck!
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Chirayu’s Answer

Managing a job and college can be challenging, but with some planning and organization, it's definitely doable. Here are some tips to help you manage both responsibilities - Make a schedule that includes both your classes and your work hours. Be sure to include time for studying, homework, and any other responsibilities you may have. Let your employer know your class schedule and any times when you won't be available to work. Try to find a schedule that works for both you and your employer. Determine which tasks are most important and prioritize them accordingly. Focus on completing your schoolwork first, and then dedicate the rest of your time to work and other responsibilities. Use a planner or calendar to keep track of deadlines, assignments, and work schedules. This can help you stay on top of your responsibilities and avoid missing important deadlines. Balancing work and school can be stressful, so it's important to take care of yourself. Make time for activities you enjoy, exercise, and get enough sleep to help you manage stress and stay focused.
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Sheila’s Answer

Hi Isaiah:

When I was in college I worked a full-time job. Fortunately for me the place that I worked at was not far from my campus so I was able to work the evening shift and still maintain my studies. I took my books to work so that I could read and study during breaks and dinnertime. After I returned home I would do any coursework that was required. On my days off I'd go to the library, spend time with friends, and participate in school events.

Here are a few tips for working and going to college to consider:

• CREATE A SCHEDULE AND STICK TO IT
Use the week before the semester begins or the week of — if it’s calm enough — to make your own document or tracker for each due date. The format is up to you. Just make sure to have a personal calendar that’s separate from your work one. It should include everything — work hours, classes, important errands, study blocks and even study breaks.

• PROTECT YOUR STUDY TIME
Scheduling study time is the first step, but it’s also essential that you stick to it. This means you’ll have to say ‘no’ to certain things. Setting clear expectations with your friends and family upfront is usually the best way to go. They could become your biggest cheerleaders — offering encouragement and even practical help.

• LEVERAGE YOUR NATURAL INTERNAL CLOCK
You’ve likely noticed that there are certain times of the day when you thrive. At other times, you may feel more sluggish. As you create your calendar, schedule the highest priority items — studying for an exam or completing a report for work — for when you’re at your best.

• MAKE GOOD USE OF YOUR PTO
If your work provides paid time off (PTO), don’t just save it for sick days or longer trips. As long as you follow your employer’s policy, you can selectively use a PTO day for study time leading up to a particularly large exam or presentation. And if your company closes shop during the holidays, consider using this time to plan the upcoming semester, study the syllabus or get ahead on your reading.

• MAKE SMART TO DO LISTS
Start by writing down every item you need to complete. Then, estimate the time it will take you to finish each task — be generous. Use your calendar to block of time for the highest-priority tasks, and adjust your to-do list to ensure you’re only focusing on items you know you’ll have time complete that day.

• FUEL YOUR BRAIN AND BODY
Take care of yourself and wellness.

• TAKE SOME (or only) ONLINE CLASSES
If you’re a self-starter, online classes could be a good fit for you. Some courses are offered fully online or in a self-paced format.

Best of luck to you!

Sheila recommends the following next steps:

Tips to Manage Working & Going to College • https://www.umassglobal.edu/news-and-events/blog/working-full-time-and-going-to-school
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