Advice for students planning to work part-time

The harsh reality for many students is that maintenance loans don’t always cover living costs, leaving them with no choice but to find a part-time job whilst studying.

Here are a few tips for juggling uni and work:

1. Education is more important

You have to learn and understand your limits. If your boss has asked you to take on an extra shift at work but you have an essay that needs doing, say no.

Money is great, but you’re at university to learn not earn. Would you rather short-term money in your pocket right now or long-term money once you’ve aced uni and are raking in the dough in your successful career?

2. Organisation is key

One of the most important things to do when you have a busy schedule is keep organised. Whether you buy a diary or use the calendar app on your phone, it is essential that you keep track of your shifts, lectures and even due dates for assignments.

It’s so much easier to be able to clearly see what your week looks like instead of keeping a mental note in your brain.  Let’s be honest, nobody wants to pick up the phone to a raging boss asking you why you haven’t turned up for your shift.

3. Put your mental health first

Taking on too many shifts whilst juggling uni can sometimes be really stressful and perhaps even detrimental for your mental health.  Make sure you don’t push yourself too hard because if you’re too stressed/tired from work it means you won’t be able to focus properly during lectures.

4. Get your sleep

Some jobs mean late night shifts i.e bartending.  This means getting your eight hours sleep every night is almost impossible but there is a reason why experts bang on about how important sleep is.  Sleeping reduces stress, improves your memory, puts you in a better mood and increases your productivity – all of which, as students, we could do with.

via GIPHY

On top of uni and work you’ll also have late nights out – I know it’s tempting when your friends are begging you to come out on a Chemistry Wednesday but it’s not always the best option.  There will always be another night out but you could be missing something really crucial in the morning lecture whilst you’re still in bed nursing a hangover.

We’ve all been there and regretted it.

5. Look for Christmas jobs in advance

Retail and hospitality shops become a lot busier in the festive season and start looking for extra staff. If you’re looking for a job, Christmas is the prime time to apply and if they like you enough they may even decide to offer you a more permanent position.

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Rebecca Sheeres

Rebecca is Unified’s Features Editor and a third year Multimedia Journalism student. Her work has been featured on KentLive, Kent Online and Culture Trip. She also co-hosts CSRfm’s Sunday Best show and is an equal rights activist.

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