First-years on work-study, hear my call. Have faith, keep trying and you will probably succeed in finding a job on campus.
Sophomores, juniors and seniors have a much wider range of job options available to them. They know professors, they know people who will recommend them for positions. Once the jobs in the library and dining services are taken, most first-years are out of luck. I didn’t have a job first term, because I started looking too late. I got here for orientation and I thought, “Oh, I’ll start applying once school actually starts. I’ll be fine.” Nope, by the time I even started about applications, the only response I got was “Well, all our positions have already been filled, but if you want to fill out an application, we’ll keep it on file.”
LESSON #1: Make job applications a priority.
Also, you cannot afford to be picky. Apply for anything and everything. It doesn’t matter if you don’t think you’ll particularly enjoy it, apply anyway. Winter term, I worked for Augie Connect, where I called alumni, checked up with them and asked them to support the Augustana Fund. When I got the email asking for job applicants, I didn’t think I’d like the job at all. I’m not the most sociable person, so spending ten hours a week talking on the phone didn’t seem like my idea of fun. But I applied, because I needed a job. And I ended up being pretty good at it, and even got to enjoy hearing all the stories that the older alums told me. Case in point–I talked to a man who is now a pastor at the congregation where Augustana was founded. I think that’s pretty cool!
LESSON #2: Don’t rule out job opportunities just because you don’t think you’ll like the job.
And finally, talk to people. Talk to your first-year advisor, your professors, your lesson teacher if you take music. Talk to everyone. A lot of people know about jobs that aren’t widely advertised. A professor might be looking for a student-worker to help with filing or organizing papers. They could hire you. And sometimes, professors will just come up to you and offer you a job. I’m working in Special Collections in the library next year, and I wouldn’t even have known that a position was available without my Creative Writing professor. She just came up to me one day, and said, “Special Collections is looking for recommendations from professors for detail-oriented student-workers. Is that something you’d be interested in?” And I said yes, of course, went for an interview and got hired!
LESSON #3: Talk to people–they’ll reveal opportunities you never knew about.
Posted on April 27th, 2012 by Rukmini Girish
Filed under: Rukmini Girish