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Balancing Commuter & Work Life

By Travis Fortounas

Staff Writer

Everyone has priorities; it is just a matter of how they are arranged. For some, school might come before work and for others work might come before school. But does commuting to campus affect the way you arrange your work schedule outside of school? Do you spend more time in the books or on the work clock or just driving between the two?

Being a waiter for a high class Italian restaurant on the North Shore has taught me how to be flexible when arranging a weekly schedule.

Before I transferred to LIU, my work schedule was completely different than what it is today. Commuting from over an hour away has a significant effect on the hours I am able to work at my job. In high school I was able to work pretty much any hours I wanted after 2 p.m. In college, I must be very careful of the hours I take due to my strenuous school schedule.

An hour commute and 16 credits certainly put your mind in a different state. I’ve realized that my job is just temporary and it’s not something that is going to stick with me for the rest of my life.

The purpose of my job is to pay my bills and to keep my head financially above water. Living at home certainly limits my spending and helps me save money in the long run; I don’t have to worry about things such as groceries and rent, so I am able to work only a few hours a week while saving money at the same time.

The purpose of school runs much deeper than a part-time job. School is where you get the education needed to pursue a lifelong career in a field of your passion.

Small part time jobs do not provide you with the health benefits provided by a long term career and could potentially leave you without medical insurance after the age of 25. As you get older, it is very important to make this transition from your part-time job to your career job for many reasons, including insurance.

After living the life of a young adult, not only have I realized how hard it is to earn a dollar, I finally understand my grandmother when she says, “save your money for a rainy day.” Students who dorm have great opportunities to get jobs on or around campus with the heart of Brookville being a few miles away. Although commuters can apply for on campus jobs, sometimes it is easier to have a job closer to home.

Going from working multiple days a week to only two proved how important an education can be. As far as my education goes, I am content with the balance between my work and school schedules. It seems beneficial for me to be at school MondayFriday and to work on the weekends.

Maintaining a manageable schedule between school and work can be very crucial when planning time to do school work. It’s not a bad thing to dedicate more time to school than work because in the end, the career is by far more important than the part-time job.

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