Debt from college can take many years to pay off. Here are some tips for working your way through college so you can attain your diploma with less debt.
How to Work Through College to Be Debt-Free
Let’s face it, the debt associated with college can be very significant. For many, college-related debt can take decades to pay off, especially if you’re in a profession that has much higher costs related to education. So it’s not surprising that more and more people are working while in college. Whether you’re at a part-time job or working several full-time jobs, here’s our tips for being successful at working while in college, and reducing or eliminating your debt.
First, Know What You Owe
First and foremost, get a handle on your situation. Calculate how much money you need to get through college without debt. This will depend on where you live, how expensive your college degree is, whether room and board are included in tuition, and your other expenses. Consider the minimum wage in your area and your college tuition costs, then calculate how many hours you would have to work per week to cover college tuition. For some people, it’s possible to make it through college without needing a job. For others, it’s absolutely out of the question.
5 Tips for Working Through College
If you’ve decided to work through college, here’s five key tips to keep in mind as you search for a job.
1. Don’t work so hard you burn yourself out
You don’t want to work so much that you end up burning out at college due to your working requirements. It could take you twice as long to pay off student debt if you drop out as opposed to if you finish your degree. So avoiding burnout should be one of your top priorities.
2. A small amount of work is better than none at all
It can be disheartening to learn that you can’t work through college debt-free, or that you’d have to stretch yourself pretty thin to do so. However, even a part-time or less than part-time job will still give you money that you can put toward your college tuition, reducing the amount you have to pay interest on. Even if you can’t do a lot of work, a small amount of work can help tremendously.
3. There are many great student jobs out there
Students need experience and flexibility, and many employers understand that. There are many jobs out there with flexible schedules and the ability to build experience. Many hiring managers market these jobs directly to students. A student job can be a great way to start creating experience for yourself so that your future resume shines.
4. Don’t settle for getting underpaid just because you’re a student
Even though you’re a student, you shouldn’t allow an employer to pay you less than you deserve. Your skills and time are still valuable, even if you’re a student. Remember that in most cases, your employer will still need to pay you at or above the minimum wage in your city and state, even if you’re working as a student.
5. Take a job that’s related to your future career
If you want to make use of your student job in your resume, take a job that’s in some way related to your career interests. An aspiring interior designer may take a job at a furniture store, while a future tax expert might work at a bank. This ensures that you can put these jobs on your resume and connect them to your career progression.
Writing a Student Resume
As a student, you still need a resume to get a job while working your way through college. The ResumeNerd resume builder is a great tool to help you create your student resume. With resume writing tips, resume templates for all types of resumes, and expert tips for each part of your resume, ResumeNerd can help you get a job as a student.
Just remember that working as a student can help you reduce the amount of debt you have to pay after you graduate, and provides extra experience that you can include on your resume after you graduate. For many students, this is a great option that can be incredibly beneficial in both the short and long run. Use these experiences along with ResumeNerd’s tools to give yourself a major career advantage.