Having a part-time job while studying for exams is sometimes necessary and/or sometimes preferred by students; whether it be for financial needs or personal experience, it’s certainly not uncommon, and a lot of students end up spending a lot of their free time working. For those of you out there within this group of people, we know it can sometimes get tough to fit in both work and study, so we’ve written a blog to try and help you balance the two with minimum stress!
I work too much and don’t have time to study, what do I do?
Ask for a reduction of hours from work coming up to exam time. Hopefully, your employer is a fair one, who will understand that you have exams approaching and can’t be available to work whenever you have a spare moment. Try to explain that you need time to focus on your exams and request that you have certain hours or days free, depending on your personal and study schedule.
I need as much money as I can get and can’t afford to work less?
This is of course understandable in some cases, but if you just reduce your hours a little, you can still earn an income as well as fit in some more study-time. Perhaps for the sake of a few short months, try saving your money in other areas, e.g. by not going out on every weekend. That’s not to say that you should eliminate any social life you have – but you don’t have to spend a lot of money to have fun and be sociable!
You need to take your education seriously, so hopefully you earning a little less for the sake of a few months now, will pay off in the months and years to come. :)
I’m too tired after work to start studying or do my homework, how do I solve this?
Again, being tired after work is probably a sign that you're working too long/hard, meaning you should request less hours at work. The less you work, the more energy you will have to focus on your studies.
Alternatively, if possible, try to get up early and study before work while you are fresh and still have your energy. This way, you can relax after work if you're tired or stressed.
Otherwise, try to keep your energy levels up by maintaining a good diet. Fruits and low GI grains./carbohydrates are great foods for your brain and for releasing energy slowly throughout the day, so your concentration and motivation lasts longer. Avoid drinking energy drinks and coffee in order to stay awake/energised after work, these won't help and they'll make you feel worse.
I want to stop working until my exams are over, but I don’t want to lose my job if I do?
I've heard this issue a lot. It can be stressful trying to secure a part-time job in Ireland for young people, so it's understandable that you don't want to lose it and have to try and find another.
My first advice would be to again, try to talk to your boss about it and explain how you need to focus on your study but how you would love for your job to be there when you come back. Hopefully, if you have a decent manager, this won't be a problem. However, we all know this isn't always the case!
If there's a problem and your boss isn't being understanding of the situation, you need to make a decision about which is more important to you; your exam results or your job.
Personally, I recommend choosing your exams/results. Likelihood is, that you'll be able to find another job again somewhere, but you won't be likely to find other exam results. That's not how it works I'm afraid!
My work doesn’t understand the importance of my exams and won’t reduce my hours?
Again, this is a similar case, and you will, once more, need to make the decision about which is more important to you.
A lot of businesses need workers like you, so if you choose to quit in order to focus on your studies, they might then realise that they would rather have you on reduced hours than not have you at all, and you can finally come to a compromise. If not, I would give the same advice as above. You can nearly always somehow find another job, but unless you want to repeat, it's not as easy to find other exam results.
If you have any other questions or concerns, don't hesitate to message us or send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we'll do our best to help. :)
Eimear and the Studyclix Team