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How to balance college and work

I just started college and have a job. I am majoring in business management. Full time student part time work. Right now it's pretty hard balancing everything between school work and homework. What is the best way to balance things and keep me in the race?
#business #college

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James’s Answer

When I was in college I worked between 25 and 35 hours a week (mostly during the week) and was a leader of a student organization. There were a couple things I did to be successful:
1 - Communication - I made sure I communicated with my employer so they knew that my number one priority was school but when I was there I would give 100% to the job. This opened up lines of communication and built trust with my employer and increased their willingness to work with my schedule
2 - Schedule management - At the time I used a scheduling device (today I use google calendar for both work and personal life) to make sure I had all my obligations recorded. This allowed me to know when assignments were due, when I had work, and allowed me to manage my schedule. School was my #1 priority so I made sure I made time to get work/study done. I also worked to complete work in advance of the deadline to allow for any slippage.
3 - Disconnect - Don't forget that you need to find time to relax/recharge. Find something that allows you to disconnect from work and study. This will make you more effective when you do both.

I have always found that employment during your college studies and maintaining a strong GPA reads well on resumes (it is something I look at when I do interviews). It tells employers that you can handle multiple work streams and be successful.

Stay focused on your goal and know that you're putting in work today for future success and it will pay off!
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Ahmed’s Answer

8 SIMPLE STEPS TO BALANCING WORK AND COLLEGE
1. STAY ON SCHEDULE.
The first and possibly most important step you should take when you go back to school is to create a schedule that accommodates both work and studying. There are only so many hours in the day, and mapping them out is a great way to keep yourself organized and accountable. Set aside a specific time each day to do coursework or study, making sure that you keep your work hours in mind. Whether you study on your commute or in the evening before bed, figure out a plan that works for you and stick with it.

2. SEPARATE WORK AND SCHOOL.
Another way to keep your life balanced is by creating a boundary between work and school. This means that you don’t study when you should be working, or let work interfere with your online classes, in the name of multitasking. Although this can seem daunting, it can help to think of school as a part-time job. Your school and work schedules should be kept separate, just as two jobs would be.

3. GET A SUPPORT SYSTEM.
Make sure your friends and family know that your schedule is about to change. When the people in your life understand that you’re going back to school, they can be great sources of help and support. Whether your spouse steps in to do some household chores or your friends text you and ask how classes are going, their encouragement will help you achieve your goals.

4. STUDY SOMETHING YOU ENJOY.
If you are interested in the field of study you pursue, there’s a better chance that you’ll actually enjoy learning about it. This means that you’ll devote more time to your degree program and also be more motivated to succeed.

5. USE YOUR RESOURCES.
Schools like Concordia University, St. Paul offer a wide variety of resources for online students. From instructors and student success coaches to online library access, additional support is always available to you. Whether you are struggling with a particular topic or just confused about an assignment, don’t hesitate to reach out for help if you need it. The interactive nature of online education means that you have access to resources when you need them, from email to live chats.

6. STAY HEALTHY.
When you have a packed schedule, it’s easy to put health on the back burner. However, though skipping a few hours of sleep a night may seem like an easy way to fit more in your day, in the long run it can lead to illness and burnout. Practice healthy eating habits, get enough rest and make time to exercise a few times a week — doing so is vital to your physical, mental and emotional well-being.

7. RELAX.
Taking time to relax may not seem like a priority, but allowing some “me” time each week is important. Whether that means a weekly dinner date with your friends or staying in to watch movies, relaxation is important to give your mind a break.

8. KEEP YOUR GOALS IN MIND.
As you work to balance work and your degree, remember why you’re doing so. Everyone has their own reasons for going back to school, from increased earning potential to career advancement. Whatever your personal reason is, keep it in mind so that your goals are always in sight.
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Ann Marie’s Answer

I completely understand how trying to balance it all can be daunting!

During my college years I found myself in the same situation and started to use a day planner. I liked the ones with a month at a glance option. You could even create that type of planner online if you prefer (but I personally liked one I could carry around and edit if necessary).

Take the syllabus from each class and write in your due dates for papers and finals. You'll be able to create a timeline of when you will need to start assignments and what times you'll be most overwhelmed by school work. That information can help you communicate effectively with your work supervisor about time off you will need to study for your classes. It also lets you anticipate when you have to start working on a project or paper so that you aren't trying to do six assignments at once.

Good luck with school!


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