What it’s like to be a Work/Study student

Written by Deea Deb

We have accomplished so much in the past few years, from surviving lockdowns to remote learning and coming back to campus. Now that York’s community is fully open, there are so many exciting experiences to be had. In this post, I’ll share my experience in a Work/Study position and how you can get involved on campus. 

I am a fourth-year English and Professional Writing student employed with the #YUBlog since May 2020. At first, I worked remotely but I’m on a hybrid work schedule now that everything’s back to normal.  

The application process

The application, interview and onboarding processes are online and accessible.  

A few things to note:  

  1. Make sure to check your eligibility before applying. 

  2. You don’t need relevant (or any) work experience to apply for Work/Study jobs.  

  3. You may not receive interview calls for every job you apply to. Making sure your CV and resumé are relevant to the job will increase your chances. 

  4. There is strength in numbers. Apply to as many roles as you can that you are interested in.  

Managing schoolwork, commitments and work

Managing everything can be overwhelming at times – I've usually had a lot on my plate because I have been involved in volunteer work and student organizations. What helped me most was mapping out all my commitments on Google Calendar and creating daily task lists to keep me on track.  

I had to be mindful of scheduling too many things and take some self-care time, too. I am so grateful that the team shared our workload during peak deadline/exam season.  

Pro tip: Understand your limits and set boundaries with how much work to take on. The Learning Skills Services’ time management resources are super helpful. 

What is the best part about Work/Study opportunities?

The best part was that the team cared about giving us opportunities or assignments that matched our studies and interests. Also, our work schedule is adapted to our school schedule, and managers are considerate of busy periods for students. Regular check-ins with my manager helped me manage work, school and other commitments. 

Five tips for students applying for Work/Study positions

  1. Try to find a Work/Study position that you are interested in, even if it is unrelated to your studies. Test-drive career options without actually taking the plunge.  
  2. Having said that, keep an open mind about the jobs. The Work/Study program allows you to apply things that you learn in classes in a real situation. You never know where/when you’ll find something you’re interested in! 

  3. If you don’t have a CV or resumé or need to strengthen the ones you have, the Career Centre has helpful workshops available. Check out their events calendar to find the ones you need. 

  4. Be proactive! Tell your supervisors about the things you want to do/learn so you can get experience.  

  5. Don’t forget to network with your instructors and peers. They may recommend you for jobs! 

Learn more about the Work/Study program. If you’re interested in applying, check out the Careers page to learn more.

What are you waiting for? Start your Work/Study application today!