Working during university – how to do it right

Emily Jones explores how today’s students can strike the right balance between study and work.

Many students choose to work during their studies for different reasons- whether they be financial, to gain experience, to meet new people or something else.  However, it isn’t always simple, with some universities even telling their students that they must only work during the summer and not alongside their studies. However, working during university certainly doesn’t have to be a bad idea, it brings with it many positives so long as you do it right. Here are some tips on how to manage working and university without burning out.

Time management

Once you find the position that suits you the best, take a step back and look at what your potential week would look like. One of the biggest struggles for working students is finding time for both one’s job and studies; not to mention the social life too! Therefore, understanding the time commitment the job requires before you accept it is very important for the future results you will achieve- both job wise and academic-wise. Don’t commit to hours you won’t be able to manage in the busier periods of university unless you are sure that you can lessen your work hours during these times. It may be worth looking to find a job with flexible hours so you don’t have to worry about fitting it around your university timetable.

Choose your time period

An important detail to understand and remember when you are a working student is that you can pick when the best time for you to work is. This means that you can also work during your summers instead of juggling your studies and job during the winter. However, it is also understandable that you may be working to make the extra money that you will use for your social life, but that doesn’t mean you can’t put money aside during your summer job! In the end it is up to you, the type of job you are looking for, and how good you are in keeping both situations under control. But do keep in mind that seasonal jobs over Christmas and in the summer can be a nice way of earning a bit of cash and gaining experience without affecting the time you have to study.

Where to look

In order for you to find the best job, you have to look in the right spots and using sites such as Jobrapido can help you filter the jobs that suit you- the number of hours you want to work and how far you are willing to travel. It can be very useful to look for listings online especially if you are studying in a new city and don’t know many people to help you in your job search. Read the job descriptions carefully- only apply if you’re sure rather than wasting a lot of time on an application that you were never really suitable for anyway.

Check with your uni

Some of you may not know this, but not all unis are OK with you working during the school term. You will most definitely want to schedule an appointment with your tutor, or check your uni’s official website to understand what the rules say exactly in regards to you having a job during your study. Not only will this be a chance for you to avoid any possible problems with you looking for a job, but it will also be a chance for you to meet with your tutor who may well have some tips on finding work within the university.


understanding the time commitment the job requires before you accept it is very important for the future results you will achieve- both job wise and academic-wise


Finding the balance between your studies, work and social life is very important, and you mustn’t lose sight of why you’re there- to do the best you can in your degree. It can be easy to lose sight of the long-term plans, but doing the best you can within your degree is the most important thing here. It’s also important to pay attention to just how much pressure you put on yourself, as it can be easy to feel snowed under and stressed when you have too much on your plate. If you find yourself feeling under too much stress take a step back and think carefully about if there is something you can do to lessen the load, be sure to allow yourself a break from time to time or do something else to relieve the pressure. Just remember that the job is extra to your uni life, and that if you start noticing it using up most of your time, something isn’t right. Keep yourself on track, and you will be able to excel in both!

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