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Central Michigan University employment services offers 5,500 students wages, 'learning opportunity' through work

While many of her friends headed home for the summer, Grayling senior Elle Smith stayed in Mount Pleasant to work in the landscaping department of Central Michigan University's Facilities Management Administration.

"I really like the job," Smith said. "I get to work outside, it's good exercise and its a nice break from school for my brain."

Of the 5,500 students hired by the university each fiscal year, between 800 and 1,200 of those will be freshman and first-year transfer students, said  Jon Goodwin, manager of student employment services. 

Goodwin said the most effective way is to approach departments you would like to work for in person, even if they do not have a job posting.

"There may be many reasons a department doesn’t have a job posting out online. " Goodwin said. "If someone does walk in and ask for a job without seeing a posting, that tells you something about that person. It can show that they’re a go-getter and that they're anxious to work, and we encourage students to put themselves out there that way."

Job seekers can also visit the Student Employment Services website, click on the current vacant positions, click the academic year, read the job postings and follow directions on how to apply. 

St. Johns junior Brady Cramer is one of the many students to find employment through the website. Cramer had wanted to work at a library for a long time, applying for several positions at the Park Library before landing a job in the access service department as a check-out assistant.

"I've spent so much time at this library, and I'm also going into higher ed administration, so I wanted to work at the university to get some experience with that," Cramer said. 

Campus Dining employs the bulk of students with on-campus jobs each year. It is the only department that asks students to apply online instead of walking in. With the exception of that department, Goodwin said a majority of students are hired by departments after making an in-person appearance.

Students searching for a job are encouraged to go to the department they are interested in, ask for the person who does the hiring, introduce themselves and simply say they want to work for them.

"Most students get their jobs that way," Goodwin said. "It's not that they shouldn't use the job postings page, but it's just important to be aware that there are other options. Sometimes getting a job means using connections you already have within a department, or making that first impression face to face."

Student employees played a significant role in the recovery process after CMU was hit by flooding. When the university closed its campus June 23 due to the flooding, some 75 student employees were called in to assist clean-up and restoration efforts. 

Employees from facilities management, residence life, university recreation, facilities operations, grounds, skilled trades and more will continue to help with the recovery process until the fall semester begins. 

You're hired, now what?

Students, with the exception of international students, are limited to working a maximum of 50 hours per each two-week pay period during the fall and spring semesters. International students are limited to working 20 hours per week.

Students working campus jobs during the summer are limited to a maximum of 80 hours per pay period. There are eight bi-weekly pay periods during the summer, beginning with the week that includes the start of summer classes. Goodwin said there are usually 1,500 to 1,800 students who work campus jobs in the summer.

Employees working multiple jobs on campus are expected to self-monitor their total hours worked per pay period, combined for all jobs they work, to ensure they do not exceed the limits.

According to the CMU Human Resources page for Frequently Asked Questions on the work hour limitations, it is necessary to limit the number of hours non-benefit eligible employees are permitted to work to ensure compliance with Affordable Care Act.

For more information on finding a job on campus, visit the Student Employment Services page.


About McKenzie Sanderson

McKenzie Sanderson is the Sports Editor at Central Michigan Life. She is a senior at Central ...

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