When people say things like “government jobs have great pay and benefits,” what do you think of? Harvard grads, suits, and senators, maybe. But starting out in the public sector isn’t as hard as it seems, even if you’re still working on your degree.
A great example of an employer that is perfect for college students and high-school graduates is the United States Postal Service. It might not be as exciting of riding through post-nuclear wastelands like The Postman, but he was doing all that for free. You’re probably getting the better deal!
Annual Casual Positions at the USPS
According to Postal Exam Review, the USPS regularly hires “casual” positions. Once you’ve completed the postal exam, you can apply (no later than February) for 89-day work periods that open up over the summer. It’s a perfect deal for college students, which Postal Exam Review says are preferred for the positions.
It might not be as glamorous as the job you’re aiming for at the end of your degree, but having worked in the public sector before might put you closer to the top of the application process when the time comes.
Quality of Career and Life
Starting pay is reported at around $20 per hour, and it isn’t just the pay and benefits that make the USPS an attractive summer job option. College students enjoy a nice long summer, and a three-month work period still gives you a few weeks completely off to get in a vacation or just lay around baking in the sun. You’ll stave off summer boredom this way. The reason they hire casual workers for that time of year comes down to mail volume becoming unmanageable for regular staff. You’ll be kept busy!
You might just fall in love with the work — and if you do, there’s a promising career ahead. After all, chances are if you prove yourself to be a good worker, there will be a full-time position waiting for you when you graduate. Who else among your peer group will be able to boast that kind of money immediately after graduating?
There are some serious perks that many people overlook. The USPS has negotiated deals with companies from a number of industries to provide their services at pretty ridiculously discounted prices to postal workers. Check out the full list of of employee deals. You’ll get a choice of discounted cellphone providers, as well as discounts on products from companies like HP.
Perhaps most attractive is the commitment that the USPS makes to career and personal development. They have a robust set of on-the-job training programs and tuition grants from many American colleges.
If you’re headed for a career in politics, international relations, or municipal administration, getting a summer job with the USPS could be very relevant for your future career. And even if you’re not looking to work in the public sector in the long term, you could do a lot worse! It’s worth the time it takes to complete a postal worker exam. You might find that a long-term career in the postal service is a very attractive option.