As a college student, basic necessities can be hard to afford. Going out to eat or seeing a movie can be difficult on such a tight budget. As a resolution to this problem, some students choose to work part-time jobs while attending school.
According to a study by Business Week, students spend most of their money on clothing at about $5 billion per year. The second most popular expenditure is measured at $4 billion per year for personal care items. DVDs, music and video games rank third at $3 billion per year.
Murray State students describe expenditures consistent with the answers from the study. Some use their paychecks from part-time jobs to pay for those wants and needs.
Ashley Deeter, senior from Medina, Tenn., just began her job for Murray State Catering Service. Deeter also babysits for some professors on occasion, especially during the weekends. Because her parents pay tuition, Deeter uses her paycheck for gas, groceries, and going out to eat with friends.
While paychecks can be used for entertainment, they can also be used for necessities. Stefan Messmer, senior from Goreville, Ill., works at the Wellness Center and Briggs and Stratton while attending school. Since he does not currently pay for tuition, Messmer chooses to spend his paycheck on rent, basic necessities and occasional travel.
Although receiving a paycheck sounds like good news to most students, some may not know what jobs are available on campus.
Murray State makes a plethora of jobs available to its students. The Financial Aid office has provided that there is an unduplicated count of 1,413 student workers on campus. Most of these positions are in most of the academic colleges and administrative offices.
Teresa Palmer, Associate Director of the Financial Aid office, said these students are working in approximately 259 positions across campus.
“The positions range from one or two to as many as 28 positions per various departments on campus,” Palmer said. “These positions include undergraduate and graduate students.”
Deeter said that because she is a student worker she cannot work more than 20 hours per week. However, because she has other commitments, Deeter is able to manage an estimated 12 to 15 hours per week offering catering service for local businesses, sorority and fraternity events, various banquets and some events that require traveling.
“I like how Murray offers jobs to a lot of students,” Deeter said. “They give everyone a chance.”
Most on-campus jobs are flexible with students’ schedules. Messmer said he is provided flexible hours as a personal trainer and building manager at the Wellness Center. He is allowed to schedule sessions with his seven clients whenever he has free time. This particular job is also flexible enough to work with a second job that is off campus.
Messmer’s second job is at Briggs and Stratton where he works 16 hours per week. Because he balances two jobs with his full-time class schedule, Messmer said he is gaining experience.
“It’s a good life lesson,” Messmer said. “It prepares you for when you have a job and to use time wisely.”
There are a lot of ways to spend a paycheck and gain experience, but finding a job is the first step. Students who are interested in finding an on or off-campus job can visit the Career Services page on Murray State website for instructions.
Story by Tiffany Whitfill, Staff writer