Long hours, low wages, sweat, and tears. Sound familiar? Well, you probably are working a job or have worked one during your college career.

Going through college without a job is tough. Students not only want money for leisure, but it is necessary for those who are paying their own way through college.

Sophomore Emma Martin transferred to Northwest this year from Benedictine, a private college in Atchison, Missouri. Mostly supporting herself during her time on campus, she runs her own photography business.

“All of my money mainly goes towards school, so this helps me quite a bit -- taking pictures of friends, couples, and new clients,” Martin says. 

Many college students, however, tend to work within campus offices or fast food restaurants. 

With a town of more than 11,000 residents, Northwest students account for more than 63 percent of Maryville’s population of just over 7,000. 

This leads to a majority of the restaurants and grocery stores to hiring students, as that is the demand. 

“I worked at Hy-Vee in high school back home in Omaha,” says Senior Taylor Wilson. “So when I came to Northwest, I was able to just transfer to this location.”

Transitioning into a new job while also keeping a balance within coursework can be a struggle, however, it has also proven to be both enjoyable and maintainable. 

“I really enjoy being a freelance photographer because it allows me to be my own boss and is an outlet to express my creativity in a professional way,” Martin says.

It’s not just Maryville that employs Northwest students. The campus itself provides a significant number of jobs for them as well.

With 850 to 1,000 students working on campus, Northwest has been able to offer a variety of different jobs, suiting both the needs and interests of students.

According to the Northwest Human Resources department, students are able to work up to 20 hours a week. 

The reasoning behind this is so that students are able to balance their time both at work and with the credit hours that they may be taking. 

“I’m very lucky to work for University Communication and Marketing,” says Senior Lee Volmer. “The office is full of great people, and I get to do what I like doing.”

Student employment on campus ranges from positions such as tutors, farm assistants, ambassadors, and custodians, among many others.

While there is a wide variety of jobs on campus, there are not enough positions for all of the students. 

Many venture off campus to work for restaurants in order to receive not only more hours but tips as well for extra cash.

Local fine-dining restaurant A & G currently has 25 college students hired. Fast food places such as Sonic Drive-Thru is not far behind with 15-20 student employees. 

Hours may require working both early and late, however, and students who are able to balance work and school have learned that this is a strength they obtain. 

When it’s time to leave campus and venture into full-time employment, Northwest Career Services offers many resources to students, one of them being resume critiques. 

A strength that they show students is that having a good grade point average while also showcasing that tuition was paid by working over 20 hours a week can be an impressive skill to employers after graduation.

“Having both class and work on campus is convenient,” Volmer says. “I stay busy but am able to balance my time better because of it.”

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