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By Rebecca Penty

With flexible hours and a nearby workplace, on-campus employment may just be the answer for students willing to put in a few hours for some extra winter income.

“Being on campus is ideal for me, because it’s where I live,” said Erin McBride, third-year campus resident and front desk staff for the Pitman Hall and ILLC residences. McBride’s work hours are scheduled around her classes. The proximity of her work, home and campus makes life easier.

Ryerson hires for positions such as McBride’s through the Ontario Work Study Program (OWSP), for which a student must demonstrate financial need. The student must also be a permanent Canadian citizen, an Ontario resident, and be enrolled in an undergraduate program.

Applications are submitted through the financial aid office. About 700 OWSP jobs from the entire Ryerson community go online at the career centre website sometime in August every year, said OWSP co-ordinator Beth Nelson. Most positions run from early September to late March.

On-campus employment is the only opportunity for international students who are not allowed to work off campus under federal and provincial regulations. International student Shyema Sajjad, a Pakistan native, is an Academic Peer Supporter in the ILLC, but says many of her international friends find jobs elsewhere on campus. Research jobs, summer jobs and other non-OWSP jobs may be found within the Ryerson community.

The Ryerson Athletic Centre (RAC) hires a number of students for positions that are not part of OWSP. Students applying as research assistants to professors in any department for 2006 do so independently of the OWSP. The Ram in the Rye hires independently of the OWSP, employing both students and open applicants, said Scott Hudson, senior manager for Food and Beverage Operations at Ryerson’s Student Campus Centre.

The campus pub is accepting applications for this term. Dawn Lovas, learning strategist for the Ryerson’s Learning Centre, said employment can lead to decreased academic performance if handled poorly. Lovas acknowledges some students can’t afford the luxury of not working, but recommends those who are employed practice effective time management, while prioritizing school work, to maintain a strong academic standing.

“What we do know from a lot of experience is that students who work more than 15 hours per week are at a high risk of not doing well,” she said.

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