Home Student & Career Tips How to Gather Job Experience While Schooling

How to Gather Job Experience While Schooling

This article contains information on how to gather Job experience while schooling.

How to Gather Job Experience While Schooling
Learn workable ways to gather job experience even as a student

Gathering job experience while school may sometimes seem impossible but realistically, it is something that can be achieved seamlessly. Going to school and gaining knowledge through education is a worthy experience but only academics will not guarantee your future immediately when your last class is over. The best way to navigate towards the direction of a promising future is to gather necessary job experience while in school. By doing this you are adding value to yourself and increasing your chances of having a beautiful career-path. Gaining work experience as a student is an excellent way of acquiring core skills and competencies necessary for your dream job after school. You may acquire these skills from paid or unpaid jobs but what is paramount is acquiring skills, experience and expertise necessary for your dream job.

Hiring managers are very concerned about work experience. They are also concerned about what it gives you; the confidence and skills necessary for you to succeed in the work environment. Whether you are planning to go to a university or college, acquiring work experience while you are at school will keep you in a favourable position when it is time to get employed for a job.

Of course, everyone has plans of being hired for a fulfilling new job that pays a handsome salary and finally being capable of affording a beautiful life. But if you have no work experience or valuable skills then you may keep on applying for jobs after school and get no invitation for a job interview or a job offer. So, you see why you need to gather work experience so as to possess valuable skills necessary to excel in the workplace?

Explained below are ways you can gather job experience while schooling:


1.  Internship

ThIs is one of the common means to gather job experience while schooling. The most useful work experience you will get may not be from the one that pays. Start looking for internship opportunities early in your college or university career, the summer after freshman year. For example, locating the right internship can be challenging, so be sure to do your research into a position before you decide to pursue it as frauds are common, even in the internship world.

The benefit of completing an internship lies in the focus on educating you on the inner workings of a particular field or business. Interns are expected to be learning, as well as contributing. The downside of an internship is its low or nonexistent pay. So by getting involved in internships, you acquire valuable experience and finally, they can help you to decide if you want to remain on that career-path or possibly change career-path if you are not finding it fulfilling.

2.  Secure a Job on campus

Kitchen assistant

Various places hire students on campus such as the residence halls, dining centres, the recreation centre, advising offices, and so on.

One of the easiest ways to acquire work experience is to pursue on-campus student employment. While a portion of these positions are reserved for work-study financial aid, not all are. But how do you both find and secure them?

Job boards may seem like the logical answer, but they are often inefficient. Instead, try to make a personal connection with the department that hosts the position. This strategy works best for office work, as you will be able to introduce yourself to the secretary of the relevant department. Even for non-departmental positions, such as food service and groundskeeping, meeting your potential supervisors can help distinguish your application.

There are two benefits to on-campus student employment: one, your supervisors will be accustomed to the challenges of scheduling your shifts around your academic commitments. Two, you will be able to demonstrate your ability to balance work and school. However, it is worth noting that you may not work in an area that is directly related to your career goals.

3.  Blogging

Do you have exceptional writing skills and the inclination? Then establishing a blog that showcases your budding expertise and insights into your future career can be a great tool for your job-search, building your career network, and adding to your resume.

4.  Freelancing

Another common way to gather job experience while school is to become a freelancer. If you have mastered a skill or possess a valuable skill then you can supplement your income and acquire valuable experience by freelancing your services to organizations that desire them. Freelancing can also give you some great work examples to add to your portfolio, while also improving and growing your network of contacts.

5.  Volunteering


Maybe you cannot find an appropriate paid position, a targeted volunteer opportunity or independent study can count toward your work experience. For instance, in a small town with few employment opportunities, your surest bet may be to find means to show those qualities that employers seek such as punctuality, organizational capabilities, honesty, and so on.

Look for recurring volunteer opportunities that follow a consistent schedule, ideally in an area that is relevant to your major. Adhering to a regular schedule will demonstrate to future employers that you are dependable, and it gives your supervisors a chance to evaluate you over an extended period of time. Independent study, when closely coordinated with faculty research, will also give you a chance to gain experience that is relevant to your field (while concurrently building recommendation-worthy relationships).

6.  Entrepreneurship

This will give you all the experiences you want to gather while in school especially if you want to venture fully  into business after graduation. Maybe you aspire to run your own business one day, or maybe you have a commercial business idea that you are concerned about getting off the ground. Employers are so concerned about employing candidates with a knack for entrepreneurship, so you see it is well-worth honing your skills whether you intend to set up your own business or not.

7.  Undergraduate Research

For students majoring in the physical or social sciences, a great way to gain work experience is to assist a professor with his or her research. Securing this sort of experience can be difficult since not all positions are advertised through the school’s employment portal. Start by contacting the secretary for each relevant department. It is often the secretary’s responsibility to coordinate the funding and paperwork for such a position, so the easiest approach may be to send a brief email that requests information on any research groups that might need an undergraduate assistant. Another tactic is to request a meeting time and to ask your questions in person. By introducing yourself directly, the secretary will be able to associate a face with your name. You can also ask the secretary for advice on which professors to approach directly.

Speaking directly to professors can be fruitful because most active research groups have discretionary funds in the form of research grants. Whether a professor chooses to employ an undergraduate assistant may come down to the quality of the available talent – in other words, if you can demonstrate, in a brief meeting, that you are intelligent, engaged, and sincerely interested, a position may be made available to you. You may also be able to learn about open positions before they are posted.

8.  Join student organizations

Every college and university has a multitude of student organizations. Your goal should be to find one or more that interest you. You can often gain experience performing organizational projects. Even better, student organizations are a great place to test and hone your managing and leading skills. So, don’t just join an organization, but pursue to be part of the organization’s management team.

9.  Temping

Maybe you lack a lot of experience working in business settings, a good option of acquiring both work and organizational culture experience is by working with a temporary employment agency that puts qualified individuals with organizations that have a short term need. Temping [1] also offers a fantastic opportunity to explore career options and build your network of contacts.

10.  Class projects

Students often look down on class projects as unnecessary or unimportant to prospective employers, but large, term-length assignments that have to do with completing a major project or report can provide you with a lot of benefits, from working with clients to leading and managing to showcasing writing or other qualities. An added advantage is that completed projects can be included in your career portfolio. And this helps give you a resume with rich-content when applying for a job.


In conclusion, enhance your career, rather than pondering or worrying on what type of experience you should acquire, just go for it. The more you obtain experience, the better and more value you possess. The more variety, the better also.

The best way is getting work experience in your chosen career field, but for those not sure what field it is, or for others that do not have time for internships, take note that all the ways of getting job experience mentioned in this article offer skills that are transferable as well as opportunities to widen your network of contacts. So strive to make a good career for yourself by acquiring solid skills that will help you transfer value to any organisation you may work for in the nearest future.


[1] What is temping and how can it help your career? (2018, May 16). Icould. https://icould.com/stories/reasons-temporary-work-worth/

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