Working while in School — My Experience

group picture of girls shopping

I’ve always been a hard worker. I always strive to keep myself occupied with so many tasks that I hardly know how to function. I like having a to-do list filled with things I have to get done, and I especially love the feeling of ticking everything off every single day.

But, working while attending college can be a bit of a challenge. I had a job in high school, and while running straight from school, to track practice, to work at the local Dairy Queen was tiring, I didn’t realize just how difficult it would be to create a balanced life in college.

I need to work to keep myself busy and occupied, but I also need to work in order to raise money for social outings, school debt, and life savings. On top of all that, I wanted to make sure that whatever job I chose would also help me get a full-time career in the future.

It's hard work to be a star

I’ve tried many jobs here in Bloomington. Over the past 4 years I’ve worked at the IU Foundation Telefund, Charlotte Russe in the College Mall, UITS TCC, and IT Training.

My two most long lasting jobs were Charlotte Russe, and my current job, IT Training. At Charlotte Russe I worked as a Key Holder/Manager. I was guaranteed plenty of hours and gained a lot of leadership skills because I was given the chance to take on a multitude of responsibilities. However, working while attending school was most difficult while working at Charlotte Russe.

At Charlotte Russe all of my attention had to be on the job. There was no down time to step away and read a chapter for my Psychology class, no time to draft ideas for a paper, and no time to do some quick coding problems. This is how it is with most college jobs, but this wasn’t a right fit for me. In order to have a good balance of work and school I couldn’t have a job that demanded me to cut out 6 hours of my day every single day and give me no room to study or even relax.

But on the positive side, I gained soooo much experience while working at Charlotte Russe. I was given the opportunity to be a leader and take charge when a situation went awry. These are the type of skills that will look good to a future employer, and I could never regret a moment of my time at Charlotte Russe because of it.

Working at TCC and Telefund gave me the opportunity to be a little more flexible, which was the complete opposite of Charlotte Russe. I was allowed a minor amount of freedom at TCC which kept me relaxed and sane. And was granted lots of time to spend on homework while working at Telefund. These jobs were a better fit for me at that time in my life–busy with school work in the middle of a long hard college career–but, they didn’t last long. I needed something that needed me more.

man typing

And finally, I found IT Training–the best job ever!! I love working for IT Training as a workshop instructor and assistant, social media marketer, and administrative coordinator. I have gained so much experience and life knowledge that will make me marketable for any future job I go for. At IT Training, I have minor flexibility when it comes to my working hours. I don’t have to come in every single day, but I could come in to the office and get stuff done if I wanted to. Having this freedom was the perfect balance of college and work for me.

That’s what this journey was all about. Some people feel as though they can’t work while attending school, and other’s work their booties off. No matter who you are, just remember that everything is a journey. You don’t have to find something that is the perfect fit right away. You can do whatever you put your mind to!!

Keep in mind that you always need a balance. Make sure the you have enough time to study, as well as have a social life, while working and gaining experience from a job. Check out these other posts about having a balanced life while attending school:

Danyell Bailey

Informatics 2016 // Social Media Marketing Consultant // MTCIU Vice President // Brainscape Ambassador // Blogger

Danyell is a senior Informatics major at Indiana University. She works for UITS in the IT Training Department as a Social Media Consultant. She is also involved as a Social Media Ambassador for IU, President of the Marketing Technology Club, a Brainscape Ambassador, and an all-around blogger. In her free time she enjoy writing for blogs. Besides WeAreIU, she has been featured in IT Training Tips Blog, The New Blak Blog, and of course, her personal blog ( In her spare time, she loves to read, walk her dogs, and design. To find out even more check out her LinkedIn >

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