Students cash in on jobs on & off campus

There are over 500 paid jobs offered by the AMS, including positions at the P&CC.
There are over 500 paid jobs offered by the AMS, including positions at the P&CC.

After paying for books, tuition, rent and groceries, many students see their summer savings disappear in a week.

To compensate for the lack of funds, many students get a part-time job. In Kingston there are only two real options: working on-campus or downtown.

Off campus job-hunting occurs for several reasons.

Anne Merritt, ArtSci ’05, said she decided to go off-campus and work at Coffee and Company because she liked the balance it gave her life.

“It’s pretty nice getting a break from the Queen’s bubble,” she said. “You get to interact with people other than Queen’s students.”

Chris Dee, Front House training manager at the Peel Pub, said his staff is made up of at least 65 per cent students.

“We are a huge university bar,” he said. “We might as well have their own kind serving them.”

The Peel Pub finished their initial hiring a month ago, but Dee said students should never be afraid to bring in their resumés.

“If any restaurant tells you they aren’t hiring, they are lying,” he said. “We are always looking to improve ourselves.”

An advantage to many off-campus jobs is more pay. Most jobs start at minimum wage but escalate the longer you stay.

“There are so many levels in this industry,” he said. “In this business, if you work hard you are going to move up, that’s all there is to it.”

But for others, the idea of working on campus at Alfie’s, the Common Ground or the P&CC with their friends is the ideal situation.

Erin Tamblyn, ConEd ’05, said she opted to work at the Common Ground instead of seeking a downtown job for the social benefits.

“I think that the social atmosphere really makes it a more enjoyable place to work,” she said. “It makes the Queen’s experience that much more fulfilling.”

There are more than 500 paid jobs in the AMS, but if you aren’t a first-year, exchange, international or transfer student, odds are that most jobs are taken.

The majority of AMS positions are filled in March and they can be difficult to attain. In 2002, more then 2,000 people applied for about 500 jobs.

First-year students, and other students who were not around in March, get a chance to snatch an AMS job in September. According to the AMS Human Resources Officer, Pamela Hopson, there are at most 70 paid positions available in this fall’s round of hiring. Andrew Graham, AMS Media and Services director, said one of the benefits of working for the AMS is the flexibility.

“It’s more accommodating to extra-curriculars and class schedules,” he said.

He did acknowledge that some students who may need more money might look elsewhere.

All entry-level service jobs in the AMS are minimum-wage. Supervisors get a small premium and managers are on salary.

“Students are generally attracted to these jobs for reasons beyond monetary compensation,” Graham said.

Students who are in the work-study program can also undertake an AMS job for their work-study term.

Hopson said the benefit of working for the AMS is that students can gain experience without having any to begin with.

“It’s to get you experience,” she said. “And to make a few extra bucks.”

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