For many, entering college is a confusing and somewhat scary time. So much comes your way — fast. At Cornell, there is more schoolwork and the need to adjust to “Prelim and Finals” seasons. You have the opportunity to join as many of the 1000-plus clubs offered as you want, you need to navigate Cornell’s vast campus and you have to try to meet people and make friends. That is why I would not be surprised if you think that adding a job into your hectic life would not be the best option.
However, it may be worthwhile to consider. At least for me, I felt the same way as those points I stated above. I wanted to focus on my schoolwork, my clubs and making friends. Yet, I quickly learned that having money is useful and having an incentive is rewarding. That is why I began applying for jobs during my summer before arriving at Cornell. Just like the real world, when applying for your first job, it is likely you won’t receive an offer. This is what happened to me. I applied to many jobs all around campus, ranging from library assistants to student office assistants. Luckily, one summer day, I received an email from my current employer. We scheduled an interview, and she soon hired me.
Currently, I work in Statler Hall at the Marriott Student Learning Center, which in simpler terms, means that I work at the Hotel School’s library and monitor the computer lab. As an Arts and Sciences student, I never had the opportunity to step foot into Statler Hall before I began my job. This means that I never interacted with “Hotelies” or studied in Statler’s lounge. Now, I spend at least four hours in Statler each week working. My job is engaging, and there is never a dull moment. Whether I am booking a room reservation or making someone a coffee, I am always active, and the students are always pleasant to work with and help. Not to mention, I have wonderful bosses who make working a lot more enjoyable.
If you feel daunted during the job hunt, do not worry. Similar to the clubs at Cornell, there are many choices when it comes to job selection. You can work in a research lab, food service, Cornell’s Outdoor Odyssey, as a library assistant and more! There are specific links and additional sites on Cornell’s Student Employment page, which make the job search easier.
If none of those job options appeal to you, you can always look off-campus in the Ithaca community, perhaps in Collegetown or in the Commons. Just know that whichever jobs you apply to and the one that ultimately offers you a position and you accept, it will be a fulfilling experience.
I have to admit that deciding to become a student-worker was an excellent decision. Working is a great way to meet others you may not normally interact with and gain leadership and work experience — all while making money.