The life of a college student is often very hectic. Between classes, papers, exams, friends, and roommates, it can be difficult to find any left over time. While it may be difficult, it is a good idea for college students to find some form of part time work they can have while in school. Balancing school and work can be difficult, but doing it will put you in a much better place financially and in terms of having good time management skills. Here are some tips to help you balance school and work.
1) Be realistic when job hunting
Everyone wants to find a good job with good pay, but for a college student, this may not always be possible. If you are a traditional college student, your job will likely be your second priority behind your schooling. This will require you make some sacrifices to remain gainfully employed. You may want that nice spot in the office, but you may end up flipping burgers in the kitchen or behind the counter making coffee. There is no shame in taking a lower-level job while in college. It sure beats having one instead of college!
2) Be honest with your employer
Managers hate it when they expect one thing from an employee but actually get another. When it comes to the amount of hours you can work, be realistic and tell your employer what you can really do. It may feel like your particular situation will just be a bother to an employer, but don’t let that stop you from applying. Many employers are quite used to working with college students. You will find that many employers are quite willing to work with your unique schedule and create something that works for you.
3) Don’t pack in too tight
If you are an ambitious person, you may be tempted to schedule something into every second of your day. This is a bad idea that will leave you drained. As much as possible, try to put some flex time into your schedule, time that you will use to make up something you missed or simply reward yourself with some relaxation. School will often take more time than your think, and packing a schedule may only get you behind on what needs to get done.
4) Think ahead with school
Most college students will find that their schedules are very different from semester to semester. This is something you need to communicate to your employer well ahead of time. If you are clear, you will learn the things they will accept from you and the things they will not. Both are good to know and can help you as you register for your classes for next semester. You may also want to work less during finals and midterms, but you will need to let your employer know multiple weeks before.
Learning to balance work and school will go a long way in developing your time management skills. Start with a little, figure out how much you can take, and make the most of your abilities to advance yourself intellectuals and financially at the same time.