A new study from Rutgers University suggests that students who work during college make higher post-college earnings than classmates who didn’t work in college. Paul Reville, former state secretary of education and a professor at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education, weighed in on the study.
“This is an interesting study that recently came out and indicated that those who work in college are likely to struggle more with getting good grades and succeeding in college," Reville said. "But on the other hand, there seems to be a strong correlation, a high association, between working in college and earning more once you get out into the job market. So it’s kind of a paradox.”
Reville gave reasons for why students should work during college, as long as it's in moderation with their studies.
"I think working a reasonable amount in college makes sense for most people and I wouldn’t advise anybody not to work in college. Partly, it connects them to the world of work and to the world outside the university which I think is good, sort of pragmatic training and helps people to develop networks and habits of mind that just enable them to be better when they get in the workforce," he said.
However, Reville stressed that the amount of hours a full-time student spends working shouldn't exceed far past 15 hours per week.
"If you’re working above 15 hours a week, for example, and trying to do a full-time program of studies where you’re taking four or five courses, you not only have classes but you have usually an even larger amount of time spent on homework outside of class. I think you’re asking for trouble if you go much above 15 hours a week," he said.
Reville’s latest book is "Broader, Bolder, Better: How Schools and Communities Help Students Overcome the Disadvantages of Poverty," co-authored with Elaine Weiss.