I Don’t Get It?

To preface: I do not mean any of this in a prideful manner. It is simply a vent.

Right now, I’m a senior in my counseling program. I take 5 classes every semester. I work 15-20 hours a week at 2 jobs, and am also in an internship. Since the fall of 2013, I’ve hosted monthly open mic events on campus (taking this semester off, but planning to start it back up again in the fall). During my off time, I enjoy making music and videos, disc golf, writing this blog, and am also a moderator on an internet forum. You can say I live a “full” life (or a busy one at least). And now here’s where I get really confused.

You see, my two jobs are both on campus. One is in I.T., where I’m the only student worker and I perform an ever-changing plethora of duties. That job I started in August. The other job is in the Cafeteria, where I started in March of 2013. Again, there, I’ve performed various tasks. I’ve played the role of cashier, buffet runner, and the most frequent, dishwasher. On Saturdays I mostly work alone and am expected to perform all tasks in the dishroom within a certain time window, while keeping the place (and myself) clean. I do this well.

Here is where I get confused, however. The cafeteria is notorious for having student workers who only work six to eight hours a week total, and these people tend to complain that they can’t work that many hours in a week. Not all of them, of course; the ones who don’t are typically the ones who actually do their jobs well, too. But the ones who do are continually trying to slim back their hours, or find ways to shortcut their work so they can leave early. Then the rest of us have to pick up their slack. Whatever. Call it job security.

But there’s something I don’t understand.

Why would someone get a job and then complain about having to work that job? In a time where jobs can be hard to come by and beyond competitive to get hired for, I’m grateful for mine, and any hours I get to work I cherish. Are there days where I don’t like it? Of course. There are always going to be frustrating days at work. Last Saturday was one of those in the dish room. But I worked hard and got through it, and am looking forward to working this Saturday. I think it’s just a matter of attitude.

Sure, I can’t do always all of the things I want because of my work schedule. It’s difficult to go visit someone for a weekend when I work most of Saturday and, of course, that’s the one day that nobody wants to cover a shift on. I’m planning to go visit a friend the first weekend of May and am probably going to have to start looking next week for someone to cover the shift. Of course, I’m also picky who I ask to cover my shifts (I want to make sure whoever covers it is competent), but that’s neither here nor there.

Maybe some people just haven’t experienced adulthood yet.

Being 18 doesn’t necessarily make a person prepared for adulthood. I will admit that I didn’t start my undergrad until I was 20, and the couple years before that I paid rent (my dad used a clever tactic to get me to move out called “make it more expensive to live here than to get an apartment.) A lot of people here came straight out of high school and largely have financial help from home. Some of them have yet to experience actually having to pay for something beyond food or fuel. But then, wouldn’t college be a good time for parents to ween their kids off of that financial support and get them ready to be on their own? Maybe I just grew up in a different world.


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