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Old 08-13-2013, 09:10 AM
 
2,349 posts, read 5,401,486 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SkylightMike231 View Post
Hello everyone, first time making a thread in this part of City Data. I would like to ask this question with those with experience in doing this sort of thing:

Is it possible to have a job(s) and attend classes, presumably 9-12 credits (like science courses) in a semester? Do you have time for other things (like relationships, hobbies, etc), or is it a really stressful thing?

I've been trying to get a job to help pay for my tuition, but all of my attempts have been futile. So I wonder if people with full-time jobs are still able to take enough credits and still have study time.

I'd like to hear from people who have done this and would either recommend it or not and find some other sort of alternative (grants, scholarships, or loans(!)).
Thank you in advance.

Yes it is possible. I did it.

However, think about it another way. How much longer will your education experience be extended (delaying your earning years)? It might be worth it to borrow money or do something else that would allow you to get out as soon as possible and start earning. If your are an engineering major example, you may be delaying a $60K+/year starting salary. If it only costs you $10K to speed up your education (I'm just making up numbers here), it might be worth it to get out as soon as possible.

Also, the later you delay, the more it really costs because you're not slicing off the first (lowest paying) years; you're slicing off the last (highest paying years). Assume you work until 65 (again making numbers up here) and you start at 22 vs 25 years old. Starting at 25 you're really losing (highest paying) earning years 41, 42, and 43 and not losing (lowest paying) earning years 1, 2, and 3.

See below, the guy starting working at 25 misses out $202K, $208K, and $214K a year in salary. This assumes they both start out at $60K a year and get an annual 3% raise.


Last edited by plmokn; 08-13-2013 at 09:26 AM..
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Old 08-13-2013, 11:36 AM
 
Location: Cincinnati near
2,627 posts, read 4,269,958 times
Reputation: 6109
You can do it, but it can be exhausting. I worked two jobs (about 25 hours/week) while double majoring in math and chemistry and running varsity track (DIII, no scholarship). I did not get a whole lot of sleep. I had to quit one of the jobs my senior year because of my capstone projects. It was very difficult to run 90+ miles a week while sleeping 5 hours or less every night, and my body was exhausted. When I graduated and got a job working 40-50 hours a week I gained 40 lbs of muscle in a year's time.... which didn't last long because I went to grad school soon after.

I had a great time in college and I also felt that I accomplished a lot, but I would not ever want to have that schedule again.
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Old 08-13-2013, 12:32 PM
 
12,098 posts, read 16,935,142 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plmokn View Post
Yes it is possible. I did it.

However, think about it another way. How much longer will your education experience be extended (delaying your earning years)? It might be worth it to borrow money or do something else that would allow you to get out as soon as possible and start earning. If your are an engineering major example, you may be delaying a $60K+/year starting salary. If it only costs you $10K to speed up your education (I'm just making up numbers here), it might be worth it to get out as soon as possible.

Also, the later you delay, the more it really costs because you're not slicing off the first (lowest paying) years; you're slicing off the last (highest paying years). Assume you work until 65 (again making numbers up here) and you start at 22 vs 25 years old. Starting at 25 you're really losing (highest paying) earning years 41, 42, and 43 and not losing (lowest paying) earning years 1, 2, and 3.

See below, the guy starting working at 25 misses out $202K, $208K, and $214K a year in salary. This assumes they both start out at $60K a year and get an annual 3% raise.
LOL @ your chart.

In the real world, people get laid off and are out of work for a while, take lesser pay to just 'have a job', go back to school, stagnate at companies without getting raises (sometimes not even inflation raises), or just don't move up the ladder period. There's typically a salary cap for experience levels that you reach. Once you reach a senior level without moving into upper management, you'll pretty much stay close to that rate.

At one of my last jobs, I knew guys in their 50s who made virtually the same as me. They weren't screw-ups, but they never moved into management either.
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Old 08-13-2013, 10:42 PM
 
Location: Northern Arizona
1,248 posts, read 3,490,238 times
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I worked at least two jobs my junior and senior years of college (and pledged a fraternity on top of that...not my smartest idea).

I even worked two jobs during grad school. Granted one was an internship that eventually turned into a temp job (and got me where I am today career-wise) and the other was a part-time retail job that I only worked once or twice a week, but it can be done.
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Old 08-14-2013, 01:38 AM
 
Location: Lakeland, FL
154 posts, read 207,983 times
Reputation: 74
Thank you all so very much for your replies. It means a mountain to me. I wish I could reply back each one but I don't want to spam the thread, lol.

And plmokn, thank you so very very much for the chart. It must have been time-consuming. Though I am leaning towards jobaba's reply, it is not really guaranteed that an engineer would land a job that soon. In fact, it could ironically take as long as the time "wasted" in school to finish without borrowing.

I would hate to borrow, finish fast, and then find out there's no job for me. I would rather go steady, borrow as little as I can, and find out that if there is nothing left for me, then I could try getting a "regular" job until something else opens up, and I wouldn't have to worry about much debt.
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Old 08-14-2013, 01:46 AM
 
Location: Lakeland, FL
154 posts, read 207,983 times
Reputation: 74
I guess it would be a little more illuminating if I opened up my situation.

Ok, I do work at my community college, I have been a math tutor there going on for 3 years this coming January, and this will be my 4th academic year in college. At the start of my job the pay was ok, though I only get minimum wage. I have a scholarship that pays only 75% of my tuition, so most of the money I make goes to repaying the 25%.

That was okay at the start, but then they started cutting our hours. I used to work 20 hours a week, which would help me get on by, down to 14 hours a week, now back up to 16.

So to help pay for books and food and living expenses and such, semester after semester I would apply for jobs constantly. But it seems IMPOSSIBLE to do as no one seems interested in hiring a student with schedule conflicts, nor matching experience no matter how long you've been at your school job.

So I don't know if college/university students can get hired and I'm just overlooking something or places just don't flat out hire students. It would REALLY explain a lot if it was the latter.
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Old 08-14-2013, 01:22 PM
 
Location: North Dakota
10,169 posts, read 13,667,435 times
Reputation: 17783
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkylightMike231 View Post
Hello everyone, first time making a thread in this part of City Data. I would like to ask this question with those with experience in doing this sort of thing:

Is it possible to have a job(s) and attend classes, presumably 9-12 credits (like science courses) in a semester? Do you have time for other things (like relationships, hobbies, etc), or is it a really stressful thing?

I've been trying to get a job to help pay for my tuition, but all of my attempts have been futile. So I wonder if people with full-time jobs are still able to take enough credits and still have study time.

I'd like to hear from people who have done this and would either recommend it or not and find some other sort of alternative (grants, scholarships, or loans(!)).
Thank you in advance.
Working part-time and going to college can be done. I'm always very skeptical of people who say they worked full-time and went to college full-time. Do the math and it's pretty hard to make that add up. As far as working a part-time job I had to stay on campus. The town I went to college was very anti-student and didn't hire students.
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Old 08-14-2013, 10:07 PM
 
10,208 posts, read 19,050,449 times
Reputation: 10870
Quote:
Originally Posted by WyoEagle View Post
Working part-time and going to college can be done. I'm always very skeptical of people who say they worked full-time and went to college full-time. Do the math and it's pretty hard to make that add up.
Depends on the job. A 9-5er is pretty much impossible, but if you can work odd hours it can be done. It's a recipe for burnout though.
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Old 08-15-2013, 12:15 AM
 
Location: North Dakota
10,169 posts, read 13,667,435 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nybbler View Post
Depends on the job. A 9-5er is pretty much impossible, but if you can work odd hours it can be done. It's a recipe for burnout though.
It's a recipe for burnout and your health and studies will suffer.
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Old 08-15-2013, 12:26 AM
 
24,488 posts, read 40,924,746 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nybbler View Post
Depends on the job. A 9-5er is pretty much impossible, but if you can work odd hours it can be done. It's a recipe for burnout though.
Definitely burnout. Let's say you take 12 credits. That's 12 hours of classroom time, 12 hours of reading time and 12 hours of research time (interfacing with professors, phd students, writing proposals and theses) per week. That's 36 hours spent in higher education per week. Sleep 10 hours/day for sleep, hygiene, bodily functions and meals adds up to 70 hours/week. Work for 40 hours/week and that leaves you with 22 hours to take care of everything else you need to (extracurriculars, laundry, shopping, etc). You'll have zero rest.

And that's with just 12 credits. Working and getting an education full-time is extremely difficult to do. Many sacrafice education while working and just do class-work (skipping all the real college learning that occurs outside of the classroom). That's a lot of money to spend on barely getting an education.
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