In a survey conducted between Humber North and Guelph-Humber students, out of the 150 students, more than 85 per cent (93) said they work part-time while being full-time students.
For 20-year-old Humber student, Kendra Perera, working and school can be challenging.
“I feel like my mind is always preoccupied. When I’m at work I drift off and think about all the assignments I have due and tests I have to study for,” said Perera.
Perera is a full-time behavioral science student and she currently works at the retail video game store, EB Games. In the past, she has also worked as a camp counsellor during the summer months. Perera said she started working for financial support in the summer because she had spare time.
Although Perera admits to a few challenges being a part time worker she believes the skills she has learned on the job will be interchangeable for a future career.
“Both of my jobs had something to do with building relationships with people. As a camp counselor I dealt with young kids and adults much older than me. I’m not afraid to talk to people of different ages, which is really important if you want to be involved in any psychology-type career.”
Brandon Eckstone, a first-year media foundations student at Humber says working part time as a cashier at the on-campus food store, the Gourmet Express has been tough but also rewarding.
“At first it was tough on my body and it gets busy. I like it here (Gourmet Express) and it influences you to do better and keep improving.”
Sriharan recommends students to start looking for employment within campus. In comparison to working off campus, Sriharan said the skills she learned with her job at school were more valuable.
“If they (students) can’t find a campus job I would suggest even taking part in workshops, or certificate courses because that is still skill building.”
Lynda.com is just one of the certified courses Sriharan recommends to students. This website provides courses on different topics taught by professionals. “For example, if you are in project management and you want to learn how to use excel, you can search that on Lynda and find some courses on that,” said Sriharan.
Lynda.com provides participants certificates of completion once a course is finished; Sriharan says this can be attached to a LinkedIn profile to show employers.
Lindsey McRae-Graine, a student support advisor at Humber says students who might not want to take on a part time should explore their options with scholarships and bursaries their school might offer.
“The truth is there are a lot of scholarships and bursaries that are there, and students don’t apply because they either don’t think they’ll get it, or they just don’t know what’s out there,” said McRae-Graine.