I am Oliwia and I am a second year student at the University of Westminster – Business Management & Economics degree. You can find my first post here to get to know me a little bit better.
As today is my last day of working in the Careers and Employability service – Student Helper role, I would like to share with you a few words about my experience and balancing work and studies.
First of all, I would like to say ‘thank you’ to the team and everyone in the office. Working with you has been an excellent experience and I really appreciate the support that you gave me from the day when I started.
During my time in the CES team I have improved a lot of my skills and gained new ones which will be useful in my future career. I strongly believe that every situation and job teaches us something and prepares for the next stage in our life. The best thing that you can do is to start investing time in yourself which can be finding a part-time job, internship, do some additional courses that will broaden your knowledge and give you an understanding of cooperation with people. Moreover, time management, multitasking, communication are the most valuable skills for all employers. If you have goals, high expectations after graduation, these are the areas that you should definitely focus on.
At the beginning, it might seem hard for you to work and study at the same time, but from my point of view it is not that difficult. The key is to be well organised and know what is expected from you. I can say that having many activities makes me more productive.
Balancing work and studies
Because of being in the second year at the University, it has been very important for me to find a flexible job that will allow me to study at the same time. When working as a Student Helper I had no problems with balancing work and studies. Personally I like being organised so planning my weeks and prioritizing tasks are very important for me. I try to always highlight all of the deadlines, schedule studying in my calendar. I can see that it really makes a difference and increases my productivity. Another thing that helped me was studying in public places. Every time I have to make some notes, write a report or essay I go to cafes or the library. I have realised that when I go somewhere I am much more focused on my tasks and do not waste time using my phone. As a result I get my coursework done quicker and exam preparation is effective.
💡 Plan ahead
💡 Use your diary – good organisation is the key, highlight the most important tasks and prioritize
💡 Go out – find places that increase your level of motivation and encourage you to do more, buy a cup of coffee and get things done
💡 Start early – try to start writing your coursework as soon as possible in order to finish before the deadline so you can focus on other assignments
💡 Use your time effectively – if studying in the morning works for you try to start your day early. If you do the most in the morning, you will be able to relax after that and have time for your hobbies or spending time with friends
💡 Avoid multitasking – try to complete one task first before moving to another one. This will save your energy as it is more demanding to do everything at the same time
💡 Switch off the notifications (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) while studying. Because of these distractions it might take you much more time to do all the things. If you check your phone all the time, you will not be able to concentrate on your work
💡 Work smart – find out what exactly you have to do in order to prepare for your coursework/exam and focus on those things. If you have time you can do additional reading to understand the content better but focus on the required part firstly
💡 Do not delay things – it will bring you more stress
💡 Prepare your notes properly and in advance – for me the best way to make my notes is to write everything on my computer. This is based on reading that I have done before and ready to be printed for my exam revision
I hope the above points will help and motivate you even a little bit.
And remember that the Careers Team is here to help you with succeeding in your employability journey! You can find our contact details below: