By: Claire Ng ‘21
Having the opportunity to work while being a student is a great way to not only kickstart your career, but also learn time management skills. It is not common to be working part-time while being a full-time student, but this is a perfect way to start building your resume before you graduate.
Here are a few tips for how to handle being a student and an intern:
Plan out your school schedule
The first step before applying for an internship during the academic year is making sure that you have an appropriate school schedule that can accommodate both working while attending all classes.
Internships during the Fall and Spring semesters usually require 2-3 days of work. When figuring out your class schedule for those upcoming semesters, it is important to think about which days you will dedicate to school and those you will dedicate to your internship. A big thing many students forget – if you decide to have classes and your internship on the same day… be sure to account for travel time. It would also be a good idea to consider taking night classes if your school offers them!
Create a planner to organize when to allocate time to do your homework
Balancing work and school takes a lot of time management. Buying a planner or using notes to write down different homework assignments, projects, and tests will visually show you when things are due and when you should do them. Internships are supposed to be opportunities for learning real work experience, not to hinder you from completing your academic assignments successfully. It is up to you how you will balance your time in order to finish your assignments.
Be aware of exams and big due dates
It can be tedious to try to balance work and school, especially when it comes to exam time. Utilizing planners and other forms of time organization will show you your availability to study and prepare for exams and other big due dates. Of course, you should feel confident and comfortable in asking your boss to take a day off to ensure that you’re getting enough time to successfully prepare for your exam. They want to see you be successful at work as well as a stellar student, so don’t be afraid to express your concerns with them!
Take time for yourself
Flipping back and forth between work and school can become extremely exhausting, you may even feel burnt out. From balancing homework and exams while preparing for a presentation or project for your internship, it can definitely be overwhelming. It’s important to give yourself time to decompress and relax. This can be going out to dinner with friends, spending a weekend doing nothing but watching TV and sleeping in or going out for runs and other workout activities. Whichever you choose, make sure to give yourself time to relax and enjoy it. This will help you destress and recharge.
Working as an intern while going to school is a great opportunity to test yourself, evaluate your time management skills while helping you better understand your passions for your future career. It can be hard when it feels like you have too much on your plate. Planning and writing out your different tasks will definitely help relieve those stresses, but most importantly, don’t forget to take time for yourself.
Interested in writing a blog for the Career Development blog? It’s open to Macaulay students and alums. If you would like to contribute or have any questions, feel free to email Jamie.Ruden@mhc.cuny.edu.