Student workers find daily balance during pandemic

Alex Ly, Reporter

Since the pandemic began, student workers have found a new balance between studying and maintaining an income. Many find difficulty in looking for jobs and those who have jobs don’t get to work as long, due to the danger of COVID-19 exposure. 

Laura Nievas, 22, student worker and business administration major at San Jose State University, said she now studies more and works less, since her workplace doesn’t offer as many hours.

“Before the pandemic, my days would start at 6 a.m. and I wouldn’t get home until 10 p.m.,” said Nievas. “Now, I wake up at 7 a.m. for work until 2:30 p.m., and then I spend the rest of the afternoon at home taking my online classes.”

Jonathan Lagasca, 22, student worker and mechanical engineering major at San Jose State University, said that studying has taken up a larger role in his life now that classes are online, which don’t require transportation. 

Still, he said that scheduling can be tricky.

“It becomes really stressful when my schedules conflict,” said Lagasca. “Especially when things like a project is due but I also have work, or office hours is the same time as my work hours.” 

Lagasca also said his work experiences have changed since the pandemic occurred. 

“I wanted some sort of work experience so I worked at Costco as a food sample demonstrator and passed out food samples,” said Lagasca. “Work was also difficult back before the pandemic but at least it was safe.”

Instead of following a usual daily routine, students now have the freedom to plan out their own schedules and manage their time between work and studies better. This also means that students who do not have work during the pandemic have more time to pick up new hobbies. 

Cecilia Rodriguez, 22, animation major, has started making and selling dolls.

“I don’t work, like going to Starbucks or something, but I crochet animal dolls with yarn,” Rodriguez said. “I like this because I’m able to put my passion for art into a small little income for myself.”