Ah yes, the perennial question: What about working while in school? Some students depend solely on student loans, while others utilize savings or family income, but the majority of our students work while studying at The Seattle School. When anticipating the start of grad school, it can be difficult to know what kind of job (and how many hours) will work best while managing class and studying as well. To help you imagine what this transition might be like for you, we’re sharing a snapshot of how students coordinate work and school, including some of the helpful job search resources we’ve found along the way.

What will my school week look like?

This is one of our most frequently asked questions, and understandably so. The Seattle School is designed to be a full-time graduate institution, meaning classes typically take place during the week between the hours of 9:00am and 7:00pm, so it’s rarely feasible to work full-time (30-40 hours) while being a student full-time (7-10 credit hours). Classes are usually scheduled on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays, with a few intensive classes held on weekends and an occasional Thursday elective course.

Even given the above, we schedule our courses so as to allow many students to begin class sessions two days a week. This coming Fall 2020 term, many of your courses will be in the afternoon or evening; we hope that provides some additional work flexibility.

How many hours a week do most students work?

Our intention is for Thursday through Sunday to be available to you for work, family, study, and play. Many students enjoy working a flexible part-time job working between 15-30 hours a week while studying full-time. What works best for you will depend on your study habits, class schedule, family commitments, and other factors. We’ve heard the sweet spot is around 20 hours!

What else should you know when considering what job will work best for you?

What jobs most often work best for students at The Seattle School?

There are a few types of jobs common to Seattle School students. We recommend reflecting on the impact of the type of work you choose as it relates to your emotional, social, physical, and financial health. Some students feel energized working with kids as a nanny, while others prefer having more independent work online.

Nannying

For those of you who love children or might have baby-whisperer skills, nannying is a job with flexible hours and good pay. Here are some ways to find nannying gigs:

Work Study

The Seattle School does have federal work study positions in multiple departments, including in admissions, The Allender Center, admissions, and the front desk. We also have student contractors for jobs like note taking. Open positions will be posted on our Current Openings page later this summer. Here is important information to know:

Part-Time Jobs with Insurance

Here are some companies that offer insurance to part-time employees. Usually they require that you work a certain number of hours, such as an average of 21-25 per week. It depends on the company, so don’t be afraid to ask.

Also, some companies consider you full-time and offer benefits if you work a minimum of 32 hours. Most students find that a bit too much to accomplish on top of school, but there are some who do it. Those trusty time management skills will come in handy here!

The Restaurant Industry

Waiting tables can offer good paychecks in the city. In Seattle, for example, servers make minimum wage—at least $12.00 an hour, depending on the company—plus tips. 

Ministry and Counseling Jobs

If you’re looking to find employment in the industry you hope to work in upon graduation, you’re not alone. Elliott’s Wall often has postings from social service agencies, mental health hospitals, and churches. Depending on your previous experience or education, some of these may be a great fit. Mental hospitals and agencies occasionally need on-call staff or overnight workers, and some students have found this to be a schedule that works for them.

With church jobs, depending on your financial situation, this may or may not be enough financial support during this season. Of course, that varies depending on placement. If it’s what you love to do, you can find a way. For tips and connections about church jobs, chat it up with the current MDiv students!

Administrative Jobs

Some people like to do temp work because they can say yes when they’re available and no when they’re not. Also, it’s possible to find administrative positions that are part-time at churches, businesses, and in the public sector.

Self-Employed

Remote Work

Since our coursework is virtual for Fall term and you may be considering a new position with fewer hours than the one you are currently working, it may be a good idea to look at jobs that can be transferable to Seattle when you do make the move here.
Check out:

How do people find jobs?

Here are the most helpful job searching resources we’ve found.

Internally

Externally

Temp Agencies

Hopefully these will be some helpful resources as you discern and explore your options for working as a student!