It's no surprise to anyone that students who are undergraduates combine work with full-time study. Sometimes this choice is dictated by necessity: you need to pay your own tuition or help your family financially. But more often, guys just want to be seen as adults and don't want to ask their parents for money for out-of-pocket expenses.
No matter the reason you decide to start working before you graduate, one thing is important: you must be successful at both work and study, and most importantly, one should not interfere with the other.
Today we're going to talk about what to keep in mind if you're going to combine study and work.
If you haven't found a job yet
I bet that even if you have never seriously thought about finding a job, you still threw in a phrase or two in a conversation with classmates or friends: "I'm going to find a job", "At university there is only theory, it's time to look for work and practice", "I already want to work, I'm tired of this university", "I will go to work, at least there is money paid" - the wording may be different, but the essence is always the same.
Maybe you did not want to seriously look for a job, you just wanted to show yourself as a cool and mature person who is already thinking about professional fulfillment.
But here you have decided to put aside idle talk and start looking for a job seriously. So, where to start.
Don't look for jobs in the "college student" category
When I look at the "jobs for students" section, I get more than sad. Waiters and promoters are what employers think college students can apply for.
You study at a higher educational institution, you get a specialty that (I really want to believe it) you like and in which you are going to continue to work and build a career. So why take away your precious time by doing completely extraneous activities? Try to find a job in your area of expertise.
It will seem to you that you are not able to do anything, that you know nothing, that you are uncompetitive and in general it is too early for you to aim so high. This feeling of insecurity in themselves and their own abilities you should strangle at the very root, otherwise you will live with it all your life - and in college, and after graduation.
Be bold and aim for more. Studying to be a lawyer, journalist, accountant, etc.? It's a good time to start learning the basics of the profession in practice. Feel free to look for vacancies in your professional field, and do not be confused by the endless number of required skills and the lines "higher education in the field is a must" and "experience in a similar position of one year or more.
As for the requirements - they are in most cases exaggerated, so do not be in a hurry to give up before you even start. Of course, you should not lie to the employer, endowing yourself with mythical skills and abilities that you do not have, but to show yourself as a young novice specialist, who is ready to learn a lot - that is another matter.
Don't give up on the work chances you'll get at university.
And no, I'm not talking about working at the university as a lab assistant (although sometimes that's a very good option).
At university you will have internships in companies starting in your junior year, and if you perform well, you will probably be invited to work. Don't be too quick to say no.
Very often there are job opportunities "through patronage". Sometimes businesses themselves send a request to the university asking for recommendations of talented guys, and sometimes fifth-year students are looking for someone to take their place, because they move to another city or just want a change of job.
Remember, it's a good chance, and it's stupid to pass up a good chance.
Get a job in the summer.
Your first month on the job will be one of the toughest. First, you need to settle in and get used to the team. Secondly, get into all of your job duties. In summer you do not have classes, exams, credits and other academic affairs, so you can fully devote your time to work.
So, if you can, try to get a summer job. This way you'll save a lot of your own nerves, which you'll undoubtedly need in the fall, when the work front is added to the study front as well.
If you already have a job.
First and most importantly, don't complain.
You'll be proud of yourself. And, of course, sometimes you'll want to feel sorry for yourself.
We love to complain, and there's nothing wrong with that. Sometimes we just need it. But in this case, when you complain that you are "tired of combining work and study, you have insanely hard time, not enough time for your personal life, and so want to send everything to hell," think for a moment: do you really want to be pitied?
I got my first job the summer after I finished my third year. I was a good student, rarely missed classes, and I wasn't going to lower the bar any further. School was always a priority, I never thought about it, but I always knew that if I had to choose between school and work one day, I would always choose the former.
That was my choice, even though I know a dozen guys who dropped out of high school for a job.
You have to understand from the beginning what is more important to you and what you will give up if circumstances force you to make a choice.
Plan your time.
I was lucky in many ways: in my first job I had a free schedule, no need to be in the office every day from 9:00 to 17:00.