Students should work through college


Photo courtesy: Willem Flaugher Cutline: Kylee Nosbush works at the front desk in Fletcher Hall on top of being a student.

William Brush, Columnist

With the month of September already over, UW Oshkosh students are starting to settle into their daily routines. 

Despite that, UWO students should consider changing their routine to incorporate a part-time job, if they haven’t already. 

Working a part-time job while being a full-time student might seem intimidating and unrealistic when you factor in homework and social life, and you’d be right. It can be a challenge, but that depends on you.

I’ve worked through college since I started out as a freshman in the fall 2019 semester. I believe students who work through college are rewarded in ways other students aren’t.

So let’s examine the benefits of working during the semester, and how to start incorporating a side job into a student’s lifestyle and routine.  

Having extra cash is the most pertinent reason a student should consider giving up some of their free time for a side gig. 

This is especially relevant considering that according to the Pew Research Center, inflation is at its highest since the 1980s. 

This supplemental income could be used in a utilitarian fashion, such as filling up your gas tank, purchasing groceries, paying rent or filing it away as savings.

Or you could use it to buy yourself an extra drink when you’re at Peabody’s. Whatever floats your boat.

Possibly the most underrated aspect of working a job during the school year is the networking opportunities. 

For example, I’ve worked at the Midwestern gas station and convenience store Kwik Trip Inc. for nearly five years now. 

I’ve worked at multiple locations and have become acquainted with several managers and corporate co-workers.

Due to this, I’ve considered pursuing an advertising or marketing career with the company after my schooling is done, especially with a multitude of references from inside the company itself. 

This potential career path was made possible by developing a professional and social relationship with management and other co-workers, also known as networking.

With this in mind, a part-time gig meant to fuel the burning desire to manifest a Blu-ray Disc collection of your favorite movies could provide a career path you didn’t think was possible. That’s pretty neat if you ask me. 

Additionally, working through college helps students build time management skills and create a structured balance between school, work and free time. 

By working during the school year, I’ve learned to use my time well, as time normally allocated towards studying or doing homework is now being taken up by working. 

Admittedly, this could lead to mental and physical burnout if a student works too much, has too much homework or both. 

That’s why the composition of a schedule that balances work, school and relaxation is a must for a student who is working through college. 

There are several ways to create a schedule that could meet these needs. 

I’ve found that compiling a calendar of your classes is a good place to start. You can do this by accessing TitanWeb, then viewing your weekly schedule. 

From there, students can decide their availability for a job based on the gaps in the schedule. 

For example, if your last class ends at 2:50 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays, perhaps you could work from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. on those days, and use the time in between class and work for studying or recreation. 

Ultimately, the question every student who considers a work schedule must face is whether or not to work the weekends. 

Many people consider their weekends sacred, and I understand that. 

It can be a good time to rest and recharge, or to work on a big assignment due the following week. 

However, I usually work eight-hour shifts on Saturday and Sunday. 

I have since I was first hired at Kwik Trip in October 2017. 

I don’t have any problem with it, but I know it won’t jive with everyone. 

Moreover, consider working one or both weekend days and not working as much during school days. 

This is what I customarily do during the school year, and it has worked brilliantly at achieving a good balance for me. 

The key is to not overwork yourself. I made the mistake of providing availability to my work which was too open for a full-time student multiple times. 

Again, be conscious of initiating a balance. 

Lastly, don’t hesitate to ask your employer to reduce the number of hours you’re working if a balance is unattainable. 

Or if needed, don’t be afraid to quit. 

I know I just outlined why students should have a job throughout the semester, but considering that many UWO students are paying thousands of dollars in tuition and other fees, I think that getting good grades might be slightly more important than funding your weekly poker night. 

Look online for jobs in the Oshkosh area, or visit to find available jobs on campus.