Juggling jobs

It’s time to face facts. Work is an ugly four letter word, but it’s inevitable that most students are going to have to bag a job during the long summer holidays in order to finance their social lives (and, yes, studies next year). That said some jobs are better than others... Kaye Holland reviews your options

Cinema usher
If you’re a self confessed film freak then this could be the job for you Why: See all the latest big cinema releases first and for free. Sounds good? Ask about opportunities at your local cinema. Why not: Long, unsociable hours for peanuts pay.

Au pair work
Make like Mary Poppins Why: A great way to experience another country and culture a la the locals and get paid for it. Check out www.aupair-world.net Why not: Salaries vary and your ‘charges’ could turn out to be the devil’s own.

Match steward
Calling all footie fans! Sod the season ticket - saving hundreds of pounds in the process - and become a match steward instead Why: With live football now costing an arm and a leg, this is a guaranteed way to see the big match for free. Most clubs need match stewards and full training is given. Contact your club of choice for details. Why not: If you have thin skin, forget it. Heckling and swearing have been part of football since time began.

Artist’s model
Art colleges and adult education centres are always looking for life models Why: You’ll be counting the cash for getting your kit off and sitting still for a couple of hours. Visit http://www.modelreg.co.uk/index.php Why not: Shy, retiring types need not apply.

Be a human guinea pig
More and more students are taking part in medical trials Why: This is a quick and easy way to pad out the purse both during term time and the holidays. Why not: There’s a high risk factor involved, so think carefully before signing up willy nilly for any trials.

Mystery shopper
Shop till you drop! Retailers are more anxious than ever before and you can capitalise on this Why: Simply suss out the quality of customer service inn shops, cinemas, hotels and restaurants, submit an objective report and get paid for it. Plus you get to keep the goods you purchased. Check out http://uk.marketforce.com Why not: Catches? What catches? This is a dream job - maxing someone else’s card and getting paid for it! Result.

Shop work
Most shops and chain stores are crying out for staff to work weekends and during the summer sales period Why: Part time hours and fabulous discounts - but choose your store carefully. M&S and John Lewis both have a reputation for rewarding employees with substantial discounts, but not all stores are as generous. Why not: It can take the patience of a saint and then some to resist the urge not to snap at stroppy customers.

Film extra
Quite possibly the coolest way to earn some extra cash. Why: Pick and choose your days to slot around your social life. If you’re lucky, you could find yourself getting up close and personal with the stars. www.studioextras.co.uk Why not: Remember Ricky Gervais’s sitcom, Extras? Yup, standing around all day can be terribly tedious.

Student365 fan?
You’ve read the mag - no why not work for it? We’re looking for people to spread the word about our funky and free mag. You’ll need to be an excellent communicator with a good idea about marketing, confident, reliable and creative and have a good knowledge of your area. Interested? Email your name, contact details and CV to paul.russell@fd-media.co.uk

Useful websites

Career guidance www.careers-portal.co.uk Award wining careers service

www.careers-gateway.co.uk Great advice backed up with lots of information

Job finder www.gisajob.co.uk The daddy of all the UK online job sites, which has over 64,000 current vacancies

www.jobcentreplus.gov.uk Info about job centres and how to go about finding a job.

Other sites www.lawcentres.org.uk For advice on your rights at work

www.inlandrevenue.gov.uk Get the low down on your tax allowance and related info

www.dti.gov.uk/er/nmw Don’t be exploited - find out about the minimum wage

Before they were famous If what looks like a dream job turns out to be a dud one, comfort yourself with the knowledge that before rising to superstardom, many celebs had a job they probably didn’t like very much. Yes the path to celebdom is rocky and even struggling wannabes have to eat. There are few glamorous jobs out there for starry eye individuals with nothing more than an art GCSE and a desire to entertain the masses, as these A listers learned...

* National treasure, Helen Mirren, used to work at an amusement park in Southend (yes, really). Her role? A ‘blagger’ - a person employed to attract punters to the rides.

* In a bizarre incidence of art imitating real life, former Friends star Jennifer Anniston used to work as a waitress.

*When he wasn’t delivering freezers, Brad Pitt used to drive a limousine... chauffering strippers between bachelor parties.

* A long, long, long time ago, award winning director Steven Spielberg earned some extra pocket money white washing fruit trees.

* Before hitting the big time, The Voice’s Tom Jones worked as a trainee glove cutter.

Know your rights Just because you’re a part time and temporary worker, it doesn’t mean that you should be exploited. Rules such as the minimum wage apply to you as much as anyone else. The minimum wage for 18-20 year olds is currently £5.03 and for workers over 21 the rate is £6.31. An employee can’t be sacked for asserting the right to be paid the minimum wage. The one exception to this is students on course related work placement schemes who are not entitled to the minimum wage. When it comes to paying tax, the bad news is that students are in the same position as any other worker. But it’s not all doom and gloom. Unless you have hit the job jackpot, you should be able to stay within the personal allowance of what someone can earn before they pay tax. Translation? You need to earn in excess of £9,440 per year before paying tax income.

Why work? Holding down a part-time job not only bolsters your bank balance but your CV too. Paid work helps you develop transferable skills with which to wow potential employers. Today there is the harsh reality of not only being several thousand pounds in the red but the uncertainty of finding a job at the end of the degree. Competition is fiercer than ever and the days when a degree was the passport to a well paid job are long gone. If you have your heart set on a specific career after graduation, a related part time job gives you the edge over other candidates. Keep in mind that any job you take on should be something with flexible hours and semi decent pay that doesn’t interfere too much with your course and social life - let’s not forget why you came to college in the first place. Happy hunting!