As a frequent adviser of first year students, I often have conversations about how to balance jobs with academics. Many students are used to having jobs while in high school, often working significant numbers of hours per week and relying on their income for personal or family support. Often, they expect to be able to continue working a similar number of hours per week while being a student at Carleton, and they are very surprised to have only 8 hours per week in their campus work contracts. At the beginning of the academic year, before knowing what it entails to be a student here, this often seems like a great opportunity. Some students seek employment in town, others who are local often consider keeping jobs that they have had for, in some cases, years, either because they like the jobs, they are loyal to employers, or in order to retain a position that will get them better paid work during campus breaks. Is this a good idea? There is no simple answer. Answering this involves thinking about time: how much a student has available for their academic work, how much time they spend thinking/worrying over financial matters, how much time it takes to get to/from a job that isn't on campus, and how much time a student is left with to invest in becoming an integral part of the Carleton community. These, and other, questions cannot be answered before a student has had significant time on campus and has had experience with the academic rigors, challenges, and excitement that awaits. And the answer isn't the same each term. I have worked with students who went home one weekend per month for a job, students who worked long hours at various businesses in Northfield, and students who worked only their on-campus jobs. My best advice is to be cautious, and not to assume that it's possible to integrate more than a work-study position into your Carleton experience until you have enough experience to work with. Talk to people about your options--don't make the decision alone.