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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at CU Boulder chapter.

For the past five years, I have been working a part-time job while also being a student. My first (official) job was when I turned 16, at a Main Event Entertainment location near my hometown. I was a cashier/team service member during Covid-19, when everyone was still figuring out the rules of social distancing. My next job after that was in the summer of 2021, where I was a barista and eventually a team lead at Sweetwaters Coffee and Tea. After that, I reached college, where I worked briefly at a campus dining hall and the on-campus art museum at The University of Colorado Boulder. Currently, I work at Starbucks and am in the process of training to be a wedding and events DJ. 

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Throughout my experiences, I’ve been able to develop some very important skills at a young age, which I think has impacted my young adulthood in a positive way. For example, I used to have really bad phone anxiety — I hated speaking to people on the phone, hated making phones, and hated picking up the phone without any preparation beforehand. After being forced to pick up the phone as a team lead for over a year, my phone anxiety has almost completely disappeared. Now, I’m on the phone fighting with Four-Star to fix the various problems around my apartment. I’ve also learned skills like time management, which is something I would say is the most important skill I’ve learned. Life is busy, and the “real world” will have you juggling a million things at once. Learning how to manage my time and my responsibilities during high school when the stakes were lower have helped me in my college career; not to say that it isn’t still difficult at times, but I like to think I have a better grasp on how to prioritize and balance different aspects of my life. 

Having a part time job while in school has also helped me become more independent and confident. Similar to my phone anxiety, I was an incredibly shy kid — I would impose the “don’t speak unless spoken to” rule on myself, even when I had things to say. Working a job, especially ones that required me to be interacting with customers almost daily, has given me the confidence to be more of myself in my interactions with everyone, even strangers. It’s also given me insight in managing my own finances. It’s tempting to spend all of my paycheck on material possessions I don’t need just because I have the money as well, which I definitely did when I first started out. By being able to spend that money freely without having to worry about bills or rent, I like to think I got it out of my system early, and I’m more aware of how I spend my money. This doesn’t mean I don’t make the occasional “dumb” purchase (I am just a girl after all), but I am better able to prioritize where my money is spent. 

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While there are a lot of benefits to working a part time job, there are also downsides. One of the biggest negative impacts of working a part time job while also being a student is that I am tired more often than not. If you’re trying to fit everything you need to do all in one day, there’s not much time to rest in between tasks, and it does catch up to you. Going hand in hand with that, if you’re not careful, it’s incredibly easy for your grades to start slipping and to miss important deadlines. It’s also hard to balance a social life — your friends will be all hanging out together and if you’re anything like me, the FOMO of having to skip out because of work is off the charts.

As stressful as it is to juggle school, social life, and work, I truly think that working a part time job has been one of the most beneficial experiences of my life which have allowed me to become the person I am today. I believe that it’s given me the skills I need to be a (mostly) functioning adult for now and in the future.

Eera Vedavyas

CU Boulder '26

Eera Vedavyas is an editor and contributing writer at the Her Campus Chapter at the University of Colorado Boulder. Beyond Her Campus, Eera is a junior at CU Boulder studying Psychology with a minors in Business, Creative Technology & Design, and Public Health. Their writing journey began in middle school after being inspired to write a novel. Now, her writing experience has evolved too poetry, journalistic writing, and is currently editing her first novel that she hopes to publish one day. In their free time, they enjoy reading, learning how to cook, discovering new music, playing video games, and exploring new places.