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Work Learn UBC
July 6, 2018
5 mins read

The benefits of working on campus

Something you may not have started to think about yet is working during your time at UBC. Luckily, UBC has been thinking about that for you!

UBC hosts a Work on Campus Fair every year where you can meet with employers and apply for part-time jobs located on and around campus that start in September. This year it’s on August 8th , so mark your calendars!

Some employers at the Fair will also be part of UBC's Work Learn – a program that allows you to work part-time (up to 10 hours per week) in a position at or associated with UBC. Work Learn gives you the opportunity to learn real-world skills to complement your classroom learning.

Campus positions are often flexible in terms of when you work and are a great option if you’re looking to kickstart your career while at UBC. Don’t just take our word for it! Check out these student stories about what it’s like working at UBC.

"I decided to work on campus because I wanted to give back to the UBC community that welcomed me with open arms."

I had the opportunity to work with UBC Camps as a Program Assistant for a couple of years and through those experiences, I have been able to develop and gain multiple hard and soft skills, work in welcoming office environments, and make long-lasting friendships, while also expanding my professional network.

Working on campus has widened my options on where I want to work and forged new paths for what I want to do after I graduate.

- Candice Choi, 5th year, Interdisciplinary Studies 

“Without the Work Learn program, I may not have received insight into what a health research career looks like.”

I decided to major in Physics because I loved to find out why things do what they do. But one thing I felt that I was missing from my coursework was my passion for medicine and helping others. I scanned through tons of Work Learn postings and decided to apply to Digital Emergency Medicine as a Research Assistant.

This has shown me a career that I love – Health Research. This position connects my interest in health care, my knowledge in scientific analysis, and my commitment to helping others. 

- Shawna Narayan, 4th year, Physics

"If you have the opportunity to work at UBC, definitely take it! Working at UBC is an amazing way to engage in developing a community for other students, and to see the inner-workings of UBC as an institution."

I have always valued being involved in my community, and so I saw applying to work at UBC as a great way to take on a different role in creating community for students at UBC.

Through working as a First Year Experience Student Coordinator at UBC, I have gained access to a wide variety of resources and information about how UBC runs as an institution.

I was provided with countless opportunities to connect with professional staff at UBC who have amazing insight from many diverse backgrounds. As a student and employee at UBC, I have also been given the chance to truly see the results of my work as the programming for Jump Start and Imagine Day unfold. 

- Sara Chitsaz, 5th year, Sociology

“My Work Learn position helped me find a passion for what I want to do in the future...”

During the summer of 2016, I was still very confused about what I wanted to do after my undergrad. I was passionate about personal wellness so I ended up sending in a Work Learn application for a collaborative position with the UBC Wellness Centre and Student Health Services and I was offered the position!

I really enjoyed working with two major services on campus and seeing what happened behind the scenes when campus-wide initiatives were planned and implemented. Over time, my passion for health promotion grew and I could see myself working in that field in the future.

My Work Learn position helped me find a passion for what I want to do in the future and taught me to work towards a career goal but remain open-minded about what will happen in the future.

- Kiran Ubi, 5th year, Integrated Sciences 

“I love being able to apply the skills I’ve developed in the classroom to the workplace...”

When I started at UBC in 2013, my biggest dream was to be a journalist. Equally inspired by Gilmore Girls and Christiane Amanpour, I had visions of being a foreign correspondent and reporting from war zones.

Obviously, I had an idealistic view of what it would be like and very little understanding of the reality. Going into my 3rd year, I saw a Work Learn posting for a Communications position at BC Children’s Hospital, which changed my whole career and academic path.

I discovered a field that used so many of the same skills as journalism: storytelling, writing, and creativity - where being an English major was an asset rather than a liability. Having now had two fantastic Work Learn experiences, I can confidently say that the program has been one of the most inspiring and important aspects of my degree.

I love being able to apply the skills I’ve developed in the classroom to the workplace, and Work Learn helped me learn about a field - Communications - that I didn’t even know existed when I started at UBC.

- Mischa Milne, 5th year, English Literature

“This Work Learn position has made me excited to tell people that I am going to be an alumnus of UBC...”

When I first arrived at UBC, my plan was to take advantage of every opportunity that passed by. I was going to do it all. In the end, I had to be realistic. I was living off campus, relied on public transit to get around everywhere, was taking a full course load, and worked 2 part-time jobs to get by.

In my 3rd year, I just gave up on getting involved; I wanted to focus on my grades and making money. But I still felt a twinge of regret: I didn’t feel like I was doing enough to get the full undergraduate experience.

Around that time I found out about an interesting Work Learn position as an Editor Assistant for an academic journal. The hours were flexible and I could work from home on most days.

This Work Learn position has made me excited to tell people that I am going to be an alumnus of UBC because I feel like I’m contributing to and have an active role in the school. Whether you’re in first-year, or your last year, it’s never too late to re-energize your student life at UBC with the Work Learn program.

- Serena Li, 4th year, Speech Studies & Family Studies

“Not only did I come out of this work term with more skills in my tool belt, but my network expanded as well.”

As an Arts Student Assistant at the Centre for Student Involvement & Careers, I was given the opportunity to focus on specific skills that I genuinely wanted to learn more about. I wanted to gain administrative skills during my work term, and even though it wasn’t part of my job description, I was able to spend some of my time learning about this skill set from my fellow peers.

Not only did I come out of this work term with more skills in my tool belt, but my network expanded as well. My connection with UBC grew tenfold and the experiential learning opportunity that I had will have a lasting effect on my future career choices.

- Robyn Begg, 4th year, Sociology

Good luck with your job search!