It’s no secret that money can control many aspects of your life as a college student. Tuition, housing, books, food, entertainment: These are all expenses that can drain your bank account quickly.
This is where jobs and scholarships come in. With a steady income and financial assistance from the university, covering high student expenses doesn’t seem like such an impossible task.
Early in your college career, faculty and student resource centers are likely to recommend that you create a Handshake account. Handshake is an online platform for students to find jobs, internships and professional events relevant to their school and interests.
When you create a Handshake account, you have the opportunity to enter information relating to yourself, your interests, your experiences and educational background. This data helps the website match you to positions mostly based on your interests and qualifications.
As a student, some of the most engagement and career development opportunities can be found through career fairs, workshops and online seminars.
Besides job and event opportunities, Handshake also serves as a platform for students to network and connect with others in the UA community.
In the Q&A tab, students can ask questions about internship experiences, jobs applications and more to a large peer network of Handshake users.
Another way to make beneficial connections is through the students tab which allows users to find peers with specific majors, previous employers and affiliations with campus organizations.
Through this platform, students can message others to get advice and connect with like-minded people.
Even though many do not think to set one up, having a LinkedIn account in college can be a very useful resource. This social networking platform gives students more exposure to their career fields, allowing them to easily connect with potential employers.
Similar to Handshake, employers can search for and message potential employees based on involvements and interests listed on their LinkedIn profile.
The jobs tab on LinkedIn suggests positions based on a user's profile and allows people to search for and apply to jobs in their field of interest.
Included on the jobs page is an interview practice resource consisting of 26 commonly asked interview questions and tips for successfully answering each one. Utilizing this feature allows students to feel well prepared when applying for a desired position.
The University of Arizona Student Engagement & Career Development website offers various resources for students regarding jobs and other professional opportunities on campus.
One useful feature on their website is the top hiring campus employers page. Here, information for nine major campus employers is provided including the hiring schedule and links to apply for each.
Campus employers in this list include Associated Students of the University of Arizona, Arizona Student Unions, UA Bookstores and ThinkTank.
If you’re looking for other job opportunities, the events page on the Student Engagement & Career Development website lists upcoming career and workshop events exposing students to a variety of positions on campus.
The Student Engagement & Career Development website also offers educational posts on their career engagement blog. This platform provides information on topics such as career advice, student success and job searches.
For example, Amanda Harrel, the program manager of Career Peer Initiatives, recently published a blog post on restarting your job search momentum during COVID-19.
When searching through the Student Engagement & Career Development website, you may stumble upon an opportunity called Design Your Search. This is a program that gives students in-depth career search tools.
According to the Student Engagement & Career Development website, “This interactive experience will give you access to online modules in D2L, special events, and an extensive overview of strategies to use throughout your search.”
Additional benefits of the program include personal career coaches and consistent support from trained peers.
At UA’s LifeLab, peer mentors are trained to help students create and perfect their resumes, discover new career paths and practice their interview skills.
If you are unsure what career you want to pursue with your degree, LifeLab can help you explore your options with activities and discussions.
If you know exactly what you want to do after college, they can help you achieve your goals with professional preparation including resumes, cover letters and interview practice.
On top of all of these resources and campus opportunities, students can also apply to entry level jobs in retail stores or restaurants to earn an income and gain work experience.
Aside from getting a job, applying for academic scholarships is another way to earn money.
The Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid provides students with various ways to apply for financial support.
When searching for scholarships, the Incoming First Year and Transfer Tuition Award is a great place to start. These merit awards take high school core GPA and SAT or ACT scores into consideration to determine how much scholarship funding a student can qualify for annually.
If you’re an Arizona resident looking for a more competitive opportunity, the Flinn Scholarship Program covers the cost of tuition left after the Wildcat Tuition Scholarship has been applied.
Qualifying students are required to remain a “Designated Scholar” with the Flinn Foundation. This means that they must maintain their renewal eligibility while completing their undergraduate degree by completing 12 units per semester and maintaining a 3.2 cumulative GPA.
Incoming Native American students may be eligible for specialized aid opportunities.
Common items needed when applying for tribe funding include high school transcript, FAFSA and a Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood or tribal identification card. Refer to the funding application checklist to find qualification requirements for these benefits .
The UA offers specialty Arizona Board of Regents scholarships to qualifying students, one of which is The Slain Peace Officers Tuition Waiver.
This is “a tuition waiver scholarship for: Children and Spouses of Arizona Peace Officers, Arizona Fire Fighters, Arizona Emergency Paramedics, Arizona Military Service Personnel, Arizona Correctional Officers, and Arizona National Guard Members killed in the line of duty” according to the Scholarships and Financial Aid Office website.
Another ABOR scholarship opportunity is The Purple Heart Tuition Waiver, which will fund the full amount of tuition, fees, and other specified college expenses for specific Arizona service personnel who have received a Purple Heart.
A critical resource when looking for scholarship opportunities is Scholarship Universe: UA’s primary scholarship search engine.
According to the Scholarship Universe website, “SU connects Wildcats to millions of dollars in internal and external scholarships. We search, Wildcats apply.”
After answering various profile questions, Scholarship Universe will match you with hundreds of opportunities based on major, financial need, GPA and even personal interests.
Applications often consist of writing a short essay and occasionally attaching your transcript for proof of enrollment at an accredited university. The amount of scholarship money you can earn is only limited by the cost of tuition, so apply to as many as you can.
With an abundance of tools and resources, paying for college seems a little less intimidating.
While planning for all of the good times ahead, it’s important to remember to take care of your finances using the resources made available to you. Remember, you can do this.
Follow Daily Wildcat on Twitter