The likely hood of students working while in school has been rising as the cost of education rises. Generally, student’s performance has been affected negatively. The most affected are the freshmen and women in the campus followed by the juniors whose adverse result is small. The upper class men only feel the outcome when they work for longer hours.( Wooldridge,127).
American higher education system is quit ambiguous because, a majority of campus students who are supposed to be going through the system work in different places. Most of the students do prefer to be at work places rather than stay in campus. Students will work irrespective of their family backgrounds, the institutions they are in, age, family responsibilities, and even family expenses. Thus, working while in college is now more of a culture. Policy makers need to know who works, why he or she works and implications on the institution so that they can draft policies that are quit beneficial to the students and the institution. ( Jacqueline,36) According to a survey conducted in 2003 to 2004; regardless of the students gender, colour, ethnicity, marital status, age, type of institution attended and dependency, a minimum of 70 to 80% of students enrolled were working. Share of students who work range from 68% to 82% among the Asian – American students although the expectations is that students who work should vary significantly according to age, income and dependency, this is not the case. (Kendall,103).
Students who work in profit making institutions and local colleges are older thus they tend to work full time and attend part time classes. Surprisingly students who work part time are more likely to work one to 20 hours per week and at the same time schooling unlike those students who work full time basis. A record 23 percent of students who work part time are still capable of managing to work for 35 hours or more per week. A workload of 35 hours per week is strenuous for someone who is independent and at the same time trying to provide for a family. This is a big challenge since the students will automatically perform poorly in schoolwork. Independent students with an income of $25000 work for 35 hours or more while dependent students with an income of $60000 from their parents work for a maximum of 20 hours. (Ravitch,48).
Work affects students in many ways. The effects can be positive or negative. Positively, work helps students to familiarize themselves with their future employees, who in most cases will be their employers. Students who work claim that; working helps them in their career development and coursework preparation. Nevertheless, according to a research conducted between 2003 and 2004, students gave mixed reactions. Majority of students who work do not think that work limits their class schedules, choice, and number of classes taken, access to facilities and preparation of coursework. However, 48 percent of students agree that work limits their class work while 40 percent say that it affects their choice and number of classes and 31 percent say it affects their access to facilities. All this limitations increases proportionally, as the number of students who work increases. The most affected students are those working off campus unlike those working within campus. One third of the students who work say that it helps them in career development and coursework preparation. Students who work for non-profit making organizations, military, and the government are the ones who claim the benefits in career development. Students who work for profit making organizations do not benefit much from their jobs since it does not help them with their coursework. However, not more than one student working, find their jobs to be helpful with their career. (Weiner, 222).
Another effect that work has on students is that students who are old and study part time have higher GPAs compared to students who do not go to work or either study on a part time basis. This is so because students, who study on a full time basis, always have a lot of time at their disposal. Thus, they misuse that valuable time by doing other activities that are no part of academics. Students who work full time and study part time are independent. Therefore, they know that everything is upon them hence maximize every minute they have to develop their career further for they know that their career is what they will have forever. Students who only work more and more hours lack consistency in terms of graduations. The more the hours they work the more they perform poorly.GPA declines as the number of working hour’s increases. Beyond GPA, the most important indicator of academic success is persistence and graduation. (Ravitch,26)
In conclusion, many students work and do a lot of work. This is unhealthy to them physically, psychologically and academically. The kind of work that the students hold on mostly are not part of the academic programs and in most instances many of them just work for the sake of sustaining their livelihoods. Since the kind of work one is in does not correspond with an individual’s career, it results in total failure academically (Kendall,207). Therefore, the best thing is for the government to offer academic grants to those who must work in order to be in school. This eventually reduces the no of students who must work in order to be in college. Also with the government aid on education grant, the state can count on the students to perform better on their career jobs. At the end, the state benefits as its citizens get well equipped on their areas of interest. Finally, long working hours is not conducive to students. It results in mind straining and regular headaches. Therefore, students should first pursue their careers and all things shall follow.( Wooldridge,124).