If it weren’t for the fact that I had a job while doing my undergrad course, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have enjoyed the whole experience as much. Apart from studying for a degree, the other real attraction to having a part time job is the social side of uni. Surely giving up a day of your weekend or any other spare time is going to get in the way of that right? Not only do you have so many classes to attend, you have loads of coursework to produce and if this is your first time away from home, you want freedom to enjoy that experience! How, after all of that, is it going to be possible to get and hold down a job!?
The good news is that I can assure you from experience, it really is possible. Your time at uni will be demanding to be sure, but it isn’t so demanding that you literally have no choice but to spend your whole time studying or working. I can honestly promise you that whether you have a job or not, you absolutely will enjoy yourself because it’s designed to be enjoyable! I actually found that having a job meant I had more money available to spend than some of my mates who weren’t working, and as much as I had to give up time to the job, having enough to survive on (sometimes even to live pretty well on) was actually a great stress reliever when it came to studying and dealing with exams. Plus, it has to be said, that nothing gets in the way of that unbeatable new freedom more than having to call up your folks to ask for some emergency cash!
In terms of getting a job, the problem isn’t so much that people aren’t keen to hire students, I can assure you that everywhere, including Aberdeen, they really are! Students are the perfect employee for a lot of different jobs. A slight (but not big) issue is that come the beginning of semester competition for jobs is reasonably high, because lots of students want the best student jobs! The best way to deal with that is to apply online, because it might be possible to snap up the sort of jobs everyone will only start to apply for once they’ve arrived. Don’t just do that though, if you’re struggling to find work, then be sure to go into the centre of town and hand out as many CV’s as you can possibly get rid of. All of these things show an employer that you’re keen and proactive, neither of which can hurt your chances.
Whatever path you choose to steer through, your time at university will be the right one. If you choose to find a job then you’ll almost certainly find one, if you opt to tighten the belt then that’ll work too. So at the end of the day, what’s key, is that you don’t allow yourself to feel overwhelmed. Whether you decide to take on a job or not, the main thing is to aim to get your coursework done on time. The best stress reliever comes in the form of getting what causes you stress out of the way. The only thing you really have to be mindful of is what you think you’re capable of handling, but whatever you do, don’t worry too much!
For more tips about finding a part time job have a look at the RGU Careers website. They also hold a part time jobs fair at the start of term each year.
MSc Corporate Communication and Public Affairs