A guide to popular student jobs at Cal

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MARCH 12, 2014

Looking for a job? The Clog’s got you covered with this breakdown of seven student jobs at UC Berkeley.

There is stiff competition among UC Berkeley students applying for campus-provided jobs, and for good reason. Part-time student employees at UC Berkeley usually get above-minimum pay, the convenience of working on campus (or nearby) and plenty of options to choose from. But are some jobs better than others? This side-by-side comparison provides a short description of each job and evaluates its pros and cons.

Community Service Officer: A CSO can perform various duties,including BearWALK, security foot patrols and staffing special events. CSOs can work vastly different assignments, but all CSOs are described as “eyes and ears” for the UCPD.

  • Pay: starting at $12.50/hour
  • Important requirements: able to work late-night and early-morning shifts; able to utilize common sense; able to exercise professionalism
  • Pros: community service; high pay with opportunity for promotion
  • Cons: working in stressful situations

Student food service: A Cal Dining student employee has many tasks, including making desserts, replenishing food and silverware, operating the dishwasher and managing the cash register.

  • Pay: starting pay about $11.25/hour
  • Important requirements: able to work relatively long shifts; work-study preferred
  • Pros: free meals per shift!
  • Cons: constant physical activity; moving heavy items

“It’s a messy job. But if you want free food, go for this job.” — freshman Jordan Zimmerman

Library: Library jobs fall under departments such as Security and Cataloging and Circulation Services. Library jobs often require assisting patrons, checking out/in materials, using catalogs such as OskiCat and shelving library materials.

  • Pay: about $10.60/hour
  • Important requirements: usually, work-study required; prior library experience valued
  • Pros: quiet, peaceful environment; on campus; easy work
  • Cons: not the most exciting job

“I worked in a tech processing unit at the Ethnic Studies Library, and it definitely required you to be detail-oriented.” — senior Lucy Sun

Residence hall tutor: Provide drop-in tutoring services for students living in the residence halls. Work regularly scheduled evening shifts in one of these four subject areas: chemistry, physics, math and writing.

  • Pay: $12.50/hour
  • Important requirements: minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0; preferred tutoring experience
  • Pros: develop academic and leadership skills
  • Cons: work during midterm and finals weeks

Academic center assistant: Perform various administrative duties in running the Academic Services Centers and residence halls, utilizing customer service skills to work with students and people from diverse backgrounds.

  • Pay: $9.50/hour
  • Important requirements: strong customer service skills; working knowledge of word-processing software
  • Pros: enhance communication and leadership skills
  • Cons: requires frequent interaction with customers

Security monitor: Monitor the flow of people into the residence halls, report suspicious activity, inform and educate students on safety and security precautions.

  • Pay: $9/hour
  • Important requirements: none
  • Pros: flexible scheduling and late hours; might be able to do homework in your spare time
  • Cons: lowest pay of all the listed jobs; sedentary work

Educational Technology Services: ETS hires students for various technology-related UC Berkeley jobs, such as webcast administrator, engineering assistant or audio/video technician.

  • Pay: varies
  • Important requirements: different technical skills required depending on job position and title
  • Pros: flexible scheduling; no work-study required
  • Cons: sometimes mundane

“At CAFE, you receive on-the-job training, and for most of the positions, no previous tech knowledge is required.” — senior Lin Su

What has been your UC Berkeley work experience? We want to know! Share with the Clog in the comments below.

Contact Tiffany Gong at 


MARCH 11, 2014

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