How a career opportunity at Arden changed my life, and it could change yours too!

Submitted by Emma Hinkins on Tue, 11/28/2023 - 09:49

For the past four years I have been studying for a psychology degree at Arden University. Working as a teaching assistant in a school, being a parent of two primary aged children and trying to complete my psychology degree left me at times feeling like I was running around like a headless chicken. At that point in time out of all the balls I had in the air, my studies seemed to be the ball that I kept dropping and something had to give. I was desperate to find a position that I could do from home with the flexibility to enable me to focus on my studying without affecting family time. However, finding a solution was proving somewhat difficult. The search for a position that would tick all these boxes was seemingly impossible. Until one day the Arden library newsletter provided me with an exciting possibility. Arden was recruiting Student Data Ambassadors! The role seemed too good to be true, it was flexible and based online, which was exactly what I was looking for. So, I took the plunge and applied, navigated the interview process, and eventually offered the position. Change was upon me, I handed in my notice, no more working in a school! 

The normal nerves that are common when starting a new job were eased by the amazing library team. I already knew how supportive Arden can be due to my experiences as a student. Throughout my studies Arden have gone above and beyond to support me and help me succeed and I knew that my experience as an employee would be the same. Arden did not disappoint! After supporting me through the recruitment process, comprehensive training was provided by my line manager which set me up to succeed. 

A key source of support is the weekly one to one meeting with my line manager which ensures that any issues can be addressed and any changes to my weekly schedule can be accommodated to include my workload. This allows me to factor in busier studying periods and ensure assignments can be prioritized when needed. The rest of the team are so friendly and always willing to lend a helping hand with any queries that may arise. There is always someone you can go to if help is needed. They say communication is key and communication is a top priority in this team, which has made me feel supported and successful in managing my day-to-day life. My time management skills have been enhanced to ensure I can complete my workload and give time to my research project. This allows me to continue to make headway to the end goal of completing my degree whilst contributing to family life. Another vital advantage of this role is if something crops up in my family life (such as child sickness) I don’t have to worry about work as I can change my schedule to fit the work in around being a care giver.   

The work itself is straightforward yet varied in topics which keeps my interest. Since being in this role I have not only been exposed to the vast catalogue of courses Arden offers, but the constant flow of new courses being designed and implemented. To me this shows Arden’s commitment to its students to ensure that students are offered the best quality range of courses. The library team truly are the unsung heroes. They work tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure students have access to the best possible resources to support their success whilst studying. The fact that I can be a part of such an integral team really affects my motivation in such a positive way.  

What I didn’t expect was that this position would also help enhance my own study skills as well as increasing the quality of work I would be producing in my studies. Being in this role has increased my confidence and understanding of referencing dramatically. Likewise, my research skills using the library to search for relevant literature needed for referencing have also improved. This has reduced the time spent when completing literature searches which can then be used in other areas of my studies.  

It’s hard to put into words how much this opportunity has changed my life. It has allowed me to fully engage in all aspects in my life due to the flexibility the role offers. Most importantly the flexibility of this role has decreased the level of stress I was experiencing trying to juggle all the different hats I wear in my day-to-day life. Ultimately allowing me the headspace to be able to fully concentrate on my own studies.  So, to anyone who is considering applying for this position I would urge you to go for it! Not only is it a great position but it allows for autonomy to make the best of your current situation. 

Student Voice