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Archive for Saturday, August 10, 2002

On-campus jobs dwindling

August 10, 2002

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Budget cuts at Kansas University might make it harder this fall for students to find jobs on campus.

"I can't speak for campuswide," said Ann Hartley, associate director of KU's Student Employment Center, "but I know that in our office our cuts hit student-hourly jobs."

The center helps students find all kinds of jobs while they go to school: student-hourly jobs, work study and off-campus work.

 Student-hourly jobs are part-time positions in university departments. Undergraduates and graduates must be enrolled in six hours of class to be eligible for the jobs.

 Work study is a federally subsidized program to employ students with financial needs. For eligible students, a university department will pay 25 percent of its work study employee's earnings, with the federal government making up the balance. Students may access an online application to apply for work study at www.ukans.edu/~osfa.

 Off-campus jobs are just that  mostly part-time positions and private businesses around the community.

Hartley said that because of the budget cuts, many departments would maximize their budgets by trying to hire work study students and let the federal government pick up most of the tab.

"Some departments have no choice at all. It's work study student or nothing," Hartley said.

"Work study students have always been sought after," she said. "I think this year it's going to be harder for students who aren't in work study, because departments will be looking for the cheaper student."

Typically, Hartley said, her office posts 150 to 170 job openings in August, when departments need help and students are streaming into town.

"I wouldn't be surprised if there's a little less advertised," she said.

That won't stop the department from trying to help students, however. It will hold a job fair from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 20 in the fourth floor lobby of Kansas Union. About 25 on-campus employers and about a dozen off-campus businesses will be on hand. There will be a smaller version of the fair at the start of spring semester in January.

The rest of the year, students can look for job postings on the center's Web site, or on the job board outside the center's office at 110 Burge Union.

"Students seem to like looking at those paper copies," Hartley said.

The Web site offers assistance to students and alumni seeking jobs, as well as to employers seeking part-time help now, or professional help from KU graduates in the future.

And every August, Hartley said, she slips an advertisement in the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce newsletter, letting employers know they can advertise jobs on campus for free.

On-campus jobs include tutoring, housing, cooking and library work. The libraries and the student housing department are two of the biggest student employers on campus.

"Some jobs have specific requirements, and others are pretty basic," Hartley said.

"A lot of offices need basic clerical skills, office work," she said.

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