Student part-time work – is it worth it?

Student friendly York ©wikicommons

York is already widely regarded in many circles as the UK’s number one student destination. With an abundance of heritage, scenery and nightlife alongside its massively respected institutions of education, there is little wonder that York is currently home to more than 30,000 students. But one factor that is rarely mentioned in any discussion of the ideal university destination is the potential for work alongside study. Understandably, a lot of students balk at the suggestion; studying should certainly take precedence.

However, there are plenty of reasons to consider part-time work in any university city, let alone one as diverse and exciting as York. With the cost of university now at an all-time high, more and more students are turning to part-time work to help pay off those debts as soon as possible. Another monetary benefit is that earning will keep that overdraft at bay for just a little longer (meaning your bank are more likely to give you a bigger one!) and you won’t have to suffer the indignity of asking your parents for help.

Working also provides you with an obvious advantage over other students as well, in that you’ll actually have something to put on your CV when you leave university for the dreaded “real world.” Though bar-work may not feel like a valuable step towards your dream career in finance, it does display key skills: dealing with (often difficult) people, multi-tasking in a high-pressure environment, and everybody wants a friend who can make great cocktails. Even the most menial of part-time jobs can be talked up in your CV – all that matters is that you actually have the job there in the first place.

But what makes York so perfect for part-time work? York is notoriously student-friendly, and loads of local businesses buy into this ethos; they understand that if you’re studying in York, you’re obviously worth considering for a job. But friendliness isn’t all – York has such a wonderful diversity of industries, there’s bound to be something out there for you. History students are positively spoilt for choice by the local heritage industry, whilst there are plentiful publications always looking for English and Creative Writing students to join their staff.

York Racecourse ©wikicommons

If you’re after something like the aforementioned bar-work, there are an infinity of options available, some of them genuinely attractive; you will be envied if you land a role at Evil Eye, the House of Trembling Madness or the tip-heavy York Races. There are also a vast array of retail opportunities available, from Topshop to Thorntons to Waterstones; whatever your interest, there’ll be a shop through which you can share your enthusiasm with the public. As well as that, York is one of those cities that goes a bit crazy with visitors at Christmas, meaning local shops are on the lookout for seasonal staff: ideal for those of you who don’t want to commit to something more permanent.

Both the city’s universities offer exciting and helpful opportunities in volunteering, placements and internships as well, which always look good on a CV – especially if you can get an internship in the field you want to work in after your studies.

Essentially, especially for those of you in your first year, there is no reason to not get a part-time job. For experience, a new social circle and of course money, it’s the perfect way to spend your time outside of lectures.


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The Yorker
The Yorker is York's best outlet for student journalism independent of the University of York Student Union and the largest student-run business in the city. For editorial queries please contact the Editor at editor@theyorker.co.uk.