Pros & Cons of On and Off-Campus Jobs (Part 1)

By: Whitney

Before college, I had little direct experience with the working world. Sure, I babysat for neighbors and my little brothers’ friends, but college is really where I jumped in. The process was daunting at first, but I knew I wanted (and needed) to work. Coming into college, I was against the idea of me working an on-campus job. I thought it would be weird to work where I went to school and I liked having my life compartmentalized. I had an off-campus job at a daycare/afterschool program working five days a week, over the same block of time during my freshman year. Since then I have also had a couple on-campus jobs (including my internship with Career and Internship Services). Drawing on these experiences I have listed a few pros and cons of on-campus jobs.

On-campus Jobs

PROS OF ON-CAMPUS JOBS

  1. Greater flexibility around your schedule
    College basically is a full-time job. We work very hard even if it is not a paying job. Getting our degree is a priority and on-campus jobs understand the weird schedules that go along with being a student.
  2. Chances are you get breaks when the school goes on break
    Got a fabulous spring break trip planned? Want to go home for the entirety of winter break and visit family? That’s awesome! And you know you won’t have to fight anyone for the time off.
  3. Transportation takes less time/costs less
    Unless you live off campus, you could walk to work, which would save you the hassle of finding reliable transportation, paying for gas, and/or figuring out bus schedules. Logistically, you will also have to go through the job search process that, with on-campus jobs, won’t require transportation.

CONS OF ON-CAMPUS JOBS

  1. Wages might not be as high as some off-campus jobs
    This can vary from job to job of course, but the chances for more than minimum wage are higher with off-campus jobs. Both types are good for having some spending money to buy groceries and go out with friends on weekends, but off-campus jobs may provide more to your bank account.
  2. Might not be as many opportunities for a job related to your field of interest
    While I wouldn’t discount the many opportunities that may be related to your field of interest on your college campus (research assistantships, TA positions…), AND the number of great transferable skills any job offers…depending on what you’re interested in, you may find more directly related opportunities by looking for work off campus.

CONCLUSION
Turns out on-campus jobs are not as weird as I imagined as a freshman. I’ve met really awesome people through my jobs on-campus and gotten more connected to campus. I have also met really awesome people through my jobs off-campus as well, and in my next post I will be discussing some pros and cons of off-campus jobs.

Read Whitney’s other posts

Photo Source: Unsplash | Crew

Meet Whitney

whitney-s17-web

Name: Whitney
Majors: Psychology & Communication
Year in School: Senior
Length of time worked at UMD Career & Internship Services: January 2017
Favorite Place in Duluth: Dannie Duluth’s Consignment
Hobbies: Thrift shopping, kayaking, traveling, bargain hunting, and working on DIY projects

Best career advice I have received: What you want to do for the rest of your life isn’t a fill in the blank, it is a paragraph or essay question. (Basically, life does not need to be figured out all at once, you choose what you do, and you are not required to do one thing for the rest of your life.)

Career Advice: Branch out, discover new things about yourself, skills you have, and things you are interested in. You have many skills and strengths you can bring into anything you do. Put your time, effort, and energy into activities you enjoy and find valuable.