Find A Part-time Job or Not?

#4 – When you study overseas, should you find part-time jobs or not?

Most students who are studying overseas tend to find a part-time job such as waiter/waitress, barista, kitchen hand, or other jobs. The main reason they want to find the job is that they plan to fund their studies and living cost. It is the fact that international students who are studying in Australia have to pay about 800-1000 AUD per month for accommodation, food and drink, public transportation, and so forth. Not only that, the tuition fee for each semester is around 11k-15k AUD. As a result, the part-time job might be one of the most important parts of international students’ lives. However, just as it helps students carry about their finance, it also has some drawbacks. This post will show pros and cons of the part-time job, and it also answers a popular question – “should international students find part-time jobs or not?”.


First of all, there are some good sides about finding the part-time job. There is no doubt that international students are able to earn income that is enough for paying their monthly bill. Furthermore, they can expand their relationship that may be good for them in the future. Most people, for example, can get a job from their friends who were their part-time-job colleagues. Just as it helps students’ finance and improves their list of friends, doing the part-time job also helps students gain a lot of experience that is able to be related to their major. For instance, if they are studying the major related to business, doing sales will help them create the sense of what they are learning at school.


In contrast, there are some drawbacks when international students try to do the part-time job. Firstly, it is possible for students that they will be stressful which means it might be difficult for them to control the work-life-study balance. If they pay more their strength for earning money, for example, it is impossible that they will spend more time on studying which explains why most international students have the bad performance in their exams. Therefore, they can be under study pressure. Aside from that, when students are doing the job, they tend to reject the invitations from their friends because of having no time for entertainment. It results in reducing their happiness. Additionally, some part-time jobs do not suit students’ major. It means students study about IT, Design, or Engineering, but they find the job such as waiter/waitress, or kitchen hand. As a result of that, there is no experience related to the major they are learning.

Should overseas students find part-time jobs or not? 

In a case of studying about the major related to business and industry, I highly recommend you to get jobs because you are able to expand your networking. It means you can connect with more people who will be able to help your career in the future. Further, it might help you gain experience about what you are learning. For example, it is possible to contact customers and vendors so that you can deeply understand their demands. Besides that, earning money to enjoy your life is also the reason for getting jobs. However, before doing the part-time jobs, you need to ask yourself some questions:

  • What is your purpose? (for earning money, improving your knowledge, or anything else)
  • Does it suit your major or not?
  • What would you like to learn from it?
  • Who do you plan to work with? (At this point, it is important for you to find a good boss because he/she is able to teach you what you lack. If your purpose is improving your experience, it does not matter where your boss comes from.)
  • Does your wage/salary suit your ability? (At this point, if you are looking forward to doing a high-income job for students – above 18 AUD/hour, it is important to work for a Western boss because he/she is able to pay for a wage/salary that suits your ability. Further, a Western boss does not tend to ask you to do extra hours when there is a lack of human resources.)

If you plan to study Master or Ph.D. after graduating university, I think it is not important for you to find the part-time job. My piece of advice is that you just have to focus on studying and researching because it is not easy to get Master or Ph.D. certificate. However, instead of getting the part-time job, it is possible for you to take part in some internship or volunteering jobs during your holiday or your spare time. One thing I want you to remember is that you are not at risk if you do not have the part-time job. For instance, it is possible to apply for scholarships from your university if you study hard and have the great performance in the exam.


There is the tendency for international students to find a part-time job for the sake of themselves. Balancing their finance, improving their experience and build their networking are the benefits of finding part-time jobs. Meanwhile, staying in the stress-zone, reducing their happiness, and wasting their time for doing what does not suit their major are three drawbacks of getting part-time jobs. Hopefully, this post helps you, international student, create the sense of part-time jobs.


Would you prefer to do what you love (your passion) or do normal things (like waiter/waitress) for earning money to balance your finance without any interesting experience?

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