School and work: an economy of horus

School can be challenging enough as it is, but when a full-time, or even part-time job is thrown into the mix, a student’s semester can suddenly become an exercise in creeping deadlines and chronic exhaustion.

I started my first real job three years ago, out of necessity. Turns out, mowing lawns didn’t provide enough gas money for a forty-minute daily commute to campus.

I still remember my first day on the job. I texted a friend about it, excited over doing what I thought was “an adult thing.”

“Oh my God, talking to customers and folding shirts is so much fun! I’m so tired now! Working sure is hard!”

I’d worked three hours that day.

Years later, the idea of a three hour shift is hilarious, as working toward a Bachelor’s degree and working almost 50-hour weeks is the norm, made possible by overnight shifts at a more recent job.

Basically, most of my day is split between being on campus by day and sitting behind the desk at a hotel by night, with a few hours of downtime in between. That time is split between homework and trying to get some sleep.

But, the clerical nature of my job, along with my night hours, results in long periods of downtime between interactions with guests. This gives me plenty of time to open up my laptop, pull out my textbooks and notes and work on homework.

Though it leaves me a restless zombie shambling into class the next morning, it’s no longer an intimidating prospect to stay on top of my classes and still have money to fuel up for my 40-minute commute.

Whether it’s waiting tables, stocking shelves or delivering pizzas, just about all of us manage work in addition to our studies here at USI.

I know it gets stressful as the semester draws to a close, and holidays can be a nightmare, but look on the bright side.

We’ve got two full weeks left, after which we can all sit back, relax a bit, and spend a little hard-earned money on ourselves and our families.