Students manage both academics, jobs

Finding the perfect balance between school and work


Shira Aronow and Anna Johns

Even though students often seek jobs because of money, a lot of students agree that other benefits that come along with having a job can often outweigh the benefit of money.These benefits include responsibility, time management, and independence. How do students balance so many extracurriculars and take on jobs? How do they make decisions on whether or not school comes first when it comes to a job?

Sami Clark ‘20, works for Blake. Once a month, she is required to attend parent affinity meeting and her job revolves around childcare. On balancing schoolwork and her job responsibilities,  Clark said, “School always comes first, so I usually try to do most the assignment during a study hall or tutorial and then if I can’t get it done I just stay up later.” Chris Chang ‘19 also has a job during the school year as a swim teacher. He only works on the weekends so that it doesn’t interfere with his school work. Along with Clark, he agrees that school comes first, and if he has a larger workload than normal, he can let someone else take his shift.

Time management can be especially hard to balance not only with school and a job, but also sports and extracurriculars. Noah Ragan ‘19 told us that at the beginning of the year he worked two 6 hour closing shifts on Saturday and Sunday at a grocery store deli in Orono called Harvest Moon. However, as school has become more rigorous, he now only works one night a week. Along with time management skills, jobs can also give students a sense of independence.

As Laila Elbakkal ‘21 put it, it’s nice to be able to have money to spend on “what I want, when I want.” When talking to other students, there was also a general consensus that it is nice to be able to socialize with other students while at work at work, even if the responsibility of it takes away from down time. Meeting students from other schools and the environment that work provides makes it a much more fun place to be then some may assume. Elbakkal said, “I’m both an introvert and an extrovert, so I do like my down time, but a lot of the time it’s nice to meet new people.” Like Elbakkal, Georgia Clark ‘21, who worked at Lund’s and Byerly’s, adds, “the environment [at work] is awesome!” Clark also enjoys spending time with kids from other schools at work.