On-Campus Student Jobs
Now, I’m sure that tons of you have had jobs before; if not here in Iowa City, then wherever you did your high school education. Jobs have many benefits, and not only that you can earn money! There are tons of plus points to having a job, some of which you are going to see below.
Now the thing about my jobs is that because I’m an international student, I have to work on campus; it’s the law. There are some exceptions, but seeing as I’m not an International Student and Services official, it’s really better to ask them because I don’t want any international students thinking that they can listen to my advice which could possibly be wrong! But anyway, even if I weren’t an international student, I’d want to have a job on campus.
- Proximity to campus.
Obviously this varies, based on where you live, but seeing as most of us live fairly close to the University of Iowa main campus or have to commute there every day, it really is more convenient (at least for me) to have a job on campus. Taking a 30 minute bus-ride every day to work in Coralville, for example, would not only be annoying, but would also take up time that I don’t have. My jobs (I have two) are located within 5 minutes walking distance of where I live. Who doesn’t love convenience?
- There is always a job for everyone.
Now, my first job is teaching ballet. Originally when I was considering getting a job, I didn’t want one that was unrelated to my major or didn’t educate me in some way. I was pleasantly surprised to obtain a job teaching ballet at the University of Iowa Youth Ballet. I hadn’t expected there to be a program that fell in line with my dance major. Teaching ballet is not the only unexpected position available to students. One of my friends is double-majoring in Dance and Exercise Physiology; she is a fitness instructor and therefore, works at the University of Iowa Campus Recreation and Wellness Center. If you’re picky about jobs, like how I initially was, you can likely still find a position for you somewhere.
- No matter what job you get, you can learn something.
My second job is working as a retail associate in the River Room for the University of Iowa Housing and Dining. I got this job to earn more money to contribute towards the cost of my dance summer intensives. While it is completely unrelated to either of my majors, these being Dance; and English and Creative Writing with a Publishing Track, because I live in the dorms, I do not have access to a stove of my own or many cooking utilities. Therefore, by working in the River Room, I am slowly learning about cooking. I do meal prep, help set up the stations for the day and, depending on what shift I sign up for in the future, will learn how to cook! This is beneficial for future life; unless you are a billionaire who can hire cooks to make your meals, everyone needs to learn how to cook. Even though I’m not the biggest fan of rice, learning how to make stir-fry is still a good skill to learn.
- You get to know people.
This might sound a little confusing, but you can really get to know people better through working with them. Last year, I assisted Sonja, a friend of mine who has now graduated, with the teaching of her Level 3 Youth Ballet classes. Since her graduation, she has given me advice on summer ballet intensives, met with me when she returned for homecoming weekend and even offered to let me stay with her for part of the summer if I get into the ballet intensive in her city! I wouldn’t have felt comfortable asking her all the questions I did if I hadn’t gotten to know her better. Being friendly and opening up to people really opens doors for future possibilities.
- You learn time management and responsibility.
One of my first concerns about getting a job was that I wouldn’t be able to juggle classes, rehearsals AND a job. This became more concerning as I got cast in more and more parts (seeing as the more advanced you become, the more parts you get cast in, this was inevitable). But it really is possible. You just have to schedule your time carefully and make sure that you have enough time for doing homework, revising, spending time with your friends and for yourself! Burning out is NOT the way to go. I’ve always thought that piecing yourself back together after falling apart takes twice or three times as long as it does when you fall apart in the first place. Honestly… it’s so much more worth it to take that 5 or 10-minute break in the middle than to spend an hour or two pulling yourself together after a meltdown. Trust me…I know.
- You earn some money.
This might sound a tad materialistic, but yes…the money incentive is always a good one. We’re all human, we all want a little validation for the hard work that we put in. Who doesn’t like getting a paycheck at the end of two weeks and being able to spend that money?
You can spend the money on whatever you need, be it University of Iowa tuition, a summer dance intensive (that one’s my goal), that pair of earrings that you’ve been lusting after…. I’m just saying, that money is yours to spend how you need to.
Now I’m aware that many of the points that I have suggested benefit you whether you get an on-campus or off-campus job, but either way, getting a job is really beneficial. Don’t get me wrong, enjoying your university life is key because once you graduate, you’ll work for the rest of your life, but still, a little preparation never hurts anybody. You can have time for fun and for a part-time job. In fact, if you work enough hours (and have proof of residence and all that jazz), you may even be able to get in-state tuition! (Not for us international students, unfortunately). But yes…there are many benefits to getting a job and I think that getting one will really supplement one’s education. And with that… “We’ve got to work, work, to work this out…”
Yes, that was totally, completely, 100% a High School Musical 2 lyric, but hey, Disney Plus is out! It’s time for the Old Generation Disney Channel to make a returning appearance!!!