Balancing work and study

With dedication and planning, students can balance school and work. Net photo.

Students in secondary and higher institutions of learning sometimes search for jobs to generate income to cater for their necessities and tuition. Although they are both important, it takes perseverance and time for one to study and work.

Jean Remy Rutayisire is a poultry farmer, and at the same time, a student at Christian University of Rwanda. He makes sure he gets time for both his farm and his course. Since he is an evening programme student, he maximises the morning hours to work on school assignments, and works mostly over the weekend.

He says that what has enabled him to do well in both is dedication because he has to work to acquire money for part of his tuition. He has a plan of what to do at specific times; he doesn’t postpone assignments—he works on them in time. He usually focuses on work in his free time as he has a committed team of employees that he trusts.

“Prioritising assignments will allow you to focus on what is most important first, and then focus on smaller assignments later. Work ahead of time; do not postpone assignments because it might be hard to work on them at the last minute. Have some time to rest if you have finished important tasks, be sure to find some way to treat yourself and clear your head. If you don’t spare time for both school and work, you might fail to get the best out of them both,” Rutayisire says.

Gilbert Nuwagaba, an English and literature teacher at Maranyundo Girls School, says that students can balance school and work in many ways, for instance; school is as important as work because sometimes it is the work that keeps one in school. So, they should be given great concern. Time should be distributed equally.

He notes that to excel in both, one should be disciplined. Do what you are supposed to do and leave the rest to God. Keep time—for students to work and study, they must be good time managers or else they’ll lose both. Pray and always ask God for guidance.

According to Otim John Bosco, a teacher at Nu-Vision High School, Kabuga, you need total commitment for both to work out, respect the timetable because if you don’t, you will be cheating yourself. There seems to be too much exhaustion, but do exercises and sports to relax your mind. You need to think better, don’t work and study without some rest. If you plan, you will handle both.

John Mary Musinguzi, the headmaster at Little Bears Montessori School, Kigali, notes that students in secondary school should discuss this with their parents who will support them as they have home chores, work and school assignments.

He notes that students should avoid unnecessary outings, and wasting time on matters that are not pressing. Get enough sleep, eat well and in time, meet deadlines, join discussion groups—you will learn more than you could have learnt when you alone—get friends that value you, do not miss out on tests, be at school in time, and do not dodge classes.

Musinguzi adds that students should let their teachers and lecturers know that they have jobs so that in case of any problem, they can help. Employers should also be informed so that when it comes to exams, they can grant a short leave. All in all, don’t give chance to stress.