How to Manage the School + Work Balance as a Part-time Student
Career Path : Career Tips
As a student studying part-time, it is important to create a balance between your classes and work life which are both equally important. Many students who study part-time are returning back to school after taking a break, or just as many are making a career change. The common link between many part-time students is that they have already pursued post-secondary education and therefore know what to expect. This may give them a false sense of security, so it’s important to manage your time more effectively since work and school will be utilizing a large block of your day, leaving less time for studying.
Benefits of Studying Part-time
The most important benefit of working while studying part-time is that you are more likely to be more financially stable than your peers studying full-time. And although it will take longer, many part-time students finish their education basically debt-free! Take advantage of the benefits of working while studying rather than thinking of your job as a burden.
If you are working in a career related position, then the experience may also improve your CV through creating networking connections or even obtaining references. Alternatively, if you are working in a non-career related position while studying, take advantage of the connection and research potential internships or even full-time positions available in head office if a career in the industry you are working in isn’t for you. Many head offices have a variety of positions from accounting to graphic design. There are also many educational articles available that you can refer to for career ideas. You never know when one connection will lead to another.
How to Create Balance
With limited time outside of class, particularly if you are also juggling demands of a family along with school and work, it is important to plan your time carefully, as well as take care of your own personal health without working yourself into burnout. Optimize your health by making the time to eat healthy meals rather than grabbing fast food on the go. List your school schedule on a calendar and plan your grocery list and meals on the weekend in advance. If you know what meals you will be making, then it will be less tempting not to bring a lunch. As well, create the time for exercise; although your classes and work will take priority, it is important to maintain optimal health.
With limited amounts of time, select your favorite physical activity. If it is an activity that you look forward to, you will be more likely to do it. It can also become your time to unwind from a long day. Check your athletic center or school directory for a list of activities offered and the cost may even be included with tuition fees.
In the long run the choice to study part-time will be worth it and by the end of your academic career you’ll even find that you miss your student days.