Many international students seek part-time or casual work while they study in Australia. It's a great way to build confidence, gain practical experience and make new friends in your local community.
While there are many benefits to working while you study, there are two things you must do:
- Check your visa status to ensure you are eligible to work whilst studying.
- Make sure you have enough time to balance your studies, your job and your well-being.
How to find work while you study
Take these steps to find the right role for you.
- Contact the careers or employability service at your education provider or the study destination agency in your state or territory for help and advice.
- Look out for job noticeboards and alumni groups at your place of study.
- Maintain your connections through friends, family and student peers, including through clubs and community groups. Tell people you are looking for work and the type you are looking for.
- Contact recruitment agencies by phone or email to request a meeting and have your details added to a recruitment agency's database. Register with more than one agency to increase your chances of getting work.
- Consider volunteering and internships to help you gain experience and build your professional network. These not only give you a ‘feel good’ boost in assisting others, but both have the potential to lead you into paid work while you study.
- Apply for an internship. There may be internship opportunities in your course curriculum, your provider’s career services, or even through your local state or territory careers service. Your education provider may support some internship arrangements; others will require you to find an opportunity on your own. Ask for the help you need as there is support for you.
- Search for a position online.
Visit these helpful websites to look for part-time and casual work vacancies. Search by industry, type of work, location and time commitment:
Part-time, full-time or casual, what’s the difference?
The main difference between, part-time, full-time or casual work relates to the worker’s hours, rights, entitlements and benefits (including wages).
Part-time employees work a set number of hours per week, but less than 38 hours per week. Part-time employees agree to work a fixed number of hours per week with their employer.
Part-time roles are often found in hospitality and retail, care industries and supply chain sectors. Part-time employees have the same rights as full-time employees but work fewer hours.
Full-time employees work 38 hours per week, on average, across a wide range of industries and have set wages and paid leave allocated for illness and holidays each year.
Part-time and full-time employees have entitlements to paid leave, including annual leave and sick/carer’s leave. They are also entitled to a written notice if an employer terminates a contract.
Casual work is different. Casual workers may have hours that vary from week to week, and there is no commitment from the employer to offer ongoing work. Casual employees are not entitled to paid leave, but there is no limit on the amount of leave they can take. The other advantage is a higher hourly rate to compensate for tsking unpaid leave when ill or on holiday.
For an overview of each type of employment and its entitlements, visit the Fair Work Ombudsman website.