A learning opportunity

Balancing act

A learning opportunity

As students head out of college, they are burdened with the task of earning a living. To add to that, they are also thrown into the deep end of a pool called ‘reality’. But one need not fear as part-time jobs come to the rescue and help freshers survive.

Abhijit Nayak, a student of St Joseph’s College of Commerce who has worked at Ernst & Young, says,  “I started with the idea that a part-time job would kickstart things and give me a lot of experience, and help me develop a familiarity of the business.”

A part-time job isn’t just about the money but also the experience. Umair Ahmad, a student of Christ University who is working with Haptik, a customer service app, says his job is teaching him much more than he has learnt before. “From  geography to the best phone plans, my job has helped me grow academically and also as a person.”

   Be it at a coffee shop, a social worker, an assistant at a tech firm or an attendant at a fast food restaurant, these jobs provide direct access to how each business works and prepare a student for what’s to come. Deepak Visweswaraiah, managing director of NetApp, has had various stints when he was studying, as a teaching assistant, an assistant at his university lab and a brief job at Taco Bell. He says all these jobs have taught him skills that are a big part of his work today.

“A part-time job lets you apply things you have learnt in theory to real-world situations. My job as a teaching assistant opened my eyes to how things work in terms of teaching, how to handle students and grade papers, and my job as a lab assistant allowed me to write my first programme.”

In today’s competitive world, a part-time job not only adds an edge to a resume, but also shows prospective universities and employers a person’s willingness and seriousness towards academic and personal growth, which are one of the most important characteristics that is needed. Every single applicant may not have a good academic background, and having a part-time job makes up for it, along with providing a good source of income to those who need it.

“It is very hard to manage college and a job, especially with the amount of work there is. It’s worth it though. I cannot handle being free for even a small amount of time, so this is a productive way to spend my time. And if it’s helping me, why not?” says Umair. Though it is a new and upcoming concept in India, part-time jobs are gradually being recognised as a matter of importance, and something a student should be part of. Umair adds, “ I had to search quite a lot for this job, but when you get in, it is much easier to get other opportunities.”

Deepak notices that the education system in India leans more towards a theoretical approach rather than an applied one. “Having a part-time job would bridge that gap between theory and applied concepts, and it plays a big part in helping decide a student’s career path.” With more and more students travelling abroad to study, the importance of a part-time job is spreading and slowly making a presence in India.

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