Applying for Jobs as a Student

Hi guys, in previous blogs I have talked about working for Edge Hill and the opportunities available, but for this blog I thought since we are coming up to the summer when most students are looking for work, I would talk about applying for part time-work to compliment your studies and a few things to keep in mind.


Get your CV checked: If you are an Edge Hill student then you can get your CV checked by the careers team. This can be very useful as they can give you advice on changes to make that you might not have thought of otherwise, alternatively if you aren’t a uni student yet, then someone you know or a careers advisor, teacher etc. might be useful to ask as you never know how a second opinion could give you a different view.application


Apply everywhere: If you see a job that’s doable and within range then apply, even if you don’t think you will get it, applying for lot’s of roles means you are always going to have a better chance of getting something, there’s no limit to how many applications you can put in, so you might as well!


Interview Prep: If you are lucky enough to get an interview then it’s time to prepare, do your research on the business you have applied for. But even more importantly think of answers to some typical interview questions you may be asked. Common examples could include ‘a time you dealt with a pressurised situation’ or ‘a time you worked successfully as part of a team’. The more interviews you do the more used to these types of questions you will become and answers will come to you more naturally.


Be patient: Chances are depending on how lucky you are or how much experience you have, finding a job could take a while, so it’s important to keep motivated. Students are sometimes less sought out, as employers could see them as being less available because of study commitments and if your like me and live between countries for home and uni then finding a suitable job can be even more of a challenge but the important thing is to keep your options open and keep applying.

Student Finance and the Money Advice Team

With Student Finance applications opening soon, money may be on the mind. Edge Hill University does a lot to help ease money woes and provides numerous services and opportunities. On such resource is the Money Matters website, which has useful information on loans (which I have briefly detailed below), grants, bursaries, scholarships, and more!

There are two loans available from the government for undergraduate university study:

Tuition Fee Loan:
This is something you largely don’t have to worry about. You can borrow enough to cover the tuition fee for your course and is not means tested. This will be paid directly to your university – I didn’t worry about it once I had applied.

Maintenance Loan:
To help with food, accommodation and travel, this loan will depend on a variety of factors: household income, whether you’re living at home or away, the exact location of your residence, and more. The maximum amount able to be received is £8,700, or £9,916 if you qualify for the increased Maintenance Loan. This will be received directly, usually in three instalments, to your bank account or building society.

Managing the money from your maintenance loan might seem like a challenge. Typically, you receive roughly a third per term and will have to budget your money to last appropriately, accounting for rent, food, other essentials and any left over for spending (i.e. social events, shopping).

This is where the Money Advice Team can help. Available for drop-ins Monday and Friday, 10am-1pm, and Tuesday and Thursday from 1pm-4pm, they can lend a hand in keeping your finances on track, providing budgeting tips and techniques as well as information about the Student Support Fund and part-time job opportunities.

Not only are there a number of jobs on campus available to Edge Hill students (such as open day helpers and library staff), the Money Advice Team can help you find jobs in the surrounding area such as St Helens, Preston, and Liverpool.

Improving Your CV at EHU

As I’m sure you’ve been told many times before, your CV is an important document, and making sure it is well fleshed out is part of what makes a good CV. Any volunteering or part time work will show commitment, as well as any skills you’ve picked up along the way. These could be specialised (relating to your job, like for instance, waiting tables) or generalised (things such as teamwork and responsibility). In any case, you should have numerous opportunities to further bolster your CV throughout your time at Edge Hill University.

The Careers Centre on campus, currently located in the Student Information Centre (SIC), can provide assistance in acquiring a part-time job in the surrounding areas whilst at university, through the use of lists of availabilities; insight into the best places and websites to check for openings; and interview tips. Additionally, they can also help with finding volunteer work. For example, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust have a centre called the Martin Mere Wetland Centre that accepts volunteers to assist with various aspects of their conservation work, from helping in the visitor centre to maintaining the grounds.

To make sure you get some basic help with CVs and future prospects, someone from the Careers Centre comes into a lecture once or twice a year, to provide that vital information. Then you can, of course, book an appointment with a Careers Advisers for a one to one, more personal, conversation about where your future is headed.

Accompanying the campus Careers Centre, there is the careers centre website. The website has many features, from “ask a question” where you can get feedback on your CV, amongst other things, to the lists of resources and opportunities – some of which are at Edge Hill themselves.

There are numerous opportunities at Edge Hill for part time work, I myself have worked for both the Money Advice Team and the Student Recruitment Team, as well as being part of the Student Casual Bank. Then there is also the chance to work on open days, applicant visit days, and giving campus tours to prospective students throughout the year.

In short, Edge Hill provides many ways to better yourself and have that show on your CV, whilst providing you with the tools to make sure your career is heading in the direction that you want it to.

 

Can I get a part time job whilst at uni?

The short answer: Yes!

The long answer:

It’s easy to forget that you’re a full time student when you’re at uni, especially if you only have 12 hours of contact time – time in a lecture, tutorial or seminar – a week. It might seem like you have heaps and heaps of time to spend on a part time job. When I was in sixth form, I was in 26 hours a week, so it is easy to think you have an extra 14 hours a week to spend working. However, there’s more independent work to be done at university, such as studying for exams, writing assignments and reading for sessions. It’s important to factor this time in.

So, what are the options?

  • Currently, on my course, I can be in sessions anywhere between 4 and 18 hours a week, and I also spend 8 weeks of my year on placement, potentially anywhere in the country, so I needed a job that was totally flexible. I chose to work for Edge Hill, because I could choose when I needed to work, and it fit in around my studies. The jobs at Edge Hill (Student Guide, Student Mentor, etc) tend to advertise in Freshers Week, which is the first week that students start in September.
  • Alternatively, I know people on the same course as me who only work during the holidays. These tend to be people that had a job during sixth form/college and whose managers have agreed to keep them on during the holidays. Because uni students tend to have slightly longer holidays – summer, at least, if not christmas and easter – If you currently have a job, it might be worth having a conversation with your manager about this.
  • Another option is to have a weekend job in Ormskirk, Liverpool or wherever it is that you’re living. I know people that have been hired in Primark in Liverpool, the Acropolis Fish bar in Ormskirk, and Morrison’s in Maghull. This might be impacted by whether you’re commuting, or if you have a car and can travel further afield for work.

However, the best people to speak to, when you arrive, are the Edge Hill Careers Centre, who can help you write your CV and apply for jobs and help you out with queries about volunteering.

Finding a part time job whilst at uni

When I was at college I found a part-time job in a Bistro. When I went to uni, I maintained that job and commuted home every weekend, Friday to Sunday to work there. Until Christmas came and I had enough of trains – especially on a Sunday!

Needless to say, after the Christmas break I went back to uni and straight away handed out my CV in Ormskirk. I was extremely lucky as the first one I handed out became my new job! It was a pub called Disraeli’s, which was perfect as I mainly worked the night shifts on the bar, so it meant it wouldn’t clash with any of my lectures or seminars, and so I had the days to get all my work done.

I remember getting a call within 20 minutes of handing of CV into the pub. The landlady asked me to go in for an ‘informal chat’  and so I did, and within 10 minutes of being in the pub I was behind the bar pouring my first pint!

The pub has recently changed hands, but if you’re looking for a cute lunch time get away with a few twists and fun nights out then Disraeli’s has it all!

It’s been hard leaving all my work friends there, as I worked there from the beginning of 2013 straight through to this summer now! But I’ve made some really good life long friends! 🙂

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