How to Manage a College Job
Achieving your goals and dreams at college takes a lot of time and effort. Attending classes, studying for exams, and participating in clubs or sports all take up a substantial part of your day. One of the many concerns of students is whether there will be time to work a job. The short answer is yes, even with an extremely busy schedule.
I’m now in my fourth and final year at Arcadia. I have taken over 150 college credits on the Pre-PA track, participated in collegiate lacrosse for three years, conducted biological research, participated in numerous clubs, and have an amazing social life. All of this was still possible to do while working numerous jobs in the area and in my hometown in New York.
During my first year at Arcadia, I did not have a car or know the surrounding area. I was unfamiliar with what positions might be available. After finding out about various positions in the library, Kuch Center, intramurals, and even athletic teams, I discovered opportunities to work while maintaining productivity. Many of the on-campus positions allow you to work flexible hours between classes so that you can complete school work. One of my favorite jobs is working in the Kuch Center, where I’m responsible for ensuring a clean and safe environment at the front desk and in the gyms.
In the following years, I was able to explore surrounding areas and uncover amazing opportunities that fit within my busy schedule. In my sophomore year, I worked in the emergency department at Temple University Hospital. This position started at 5 a.m. and was only a 20-minute drive from campus. The shift and flexible hours they provide for students allowed me to get an early start to my day with plenty of time to spare for class.
In my last two years of college, I discovered positions such as working in operations at Lifetime Fitness and blogging/vlogging for Because Arcadia! All of these positions proved to me that working outside of campus or on campus is possible for everyone at Arcadia. This experience is not exclusive to me, however. Riley Ratcliffe is a senior Biology major on the Pre-PA track at Arcadia. She has played four years of soccer, is the president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), participates in many extracurriculars, and manages to work in the Kuch Center, Lifetime Fitness, and at a senior living facility.
If there is one recommendation I would give to someone looking to have a positive experience like mine is to understand the rule of thirds. I followed this philosophy all of my college career and it helped me keep a positive attitude and maintain confidence in myself. This rule states that in order to push yourself to your full potential, you will find one-third of your journey easy, one-third moderately challenging, and one-third of your journey extremely difficult. There were days in which I was completing assignments at midnight, but also days in which I was done by 5 p.m. and able to attend trivia night at Keswick Tavern.
Working a job while attending Arcadia can be done with the flexibility of the university as well as the vast opportunities provided by the surrounding Philadelphia area.