Jul 1, 2022

Gaining Skills with Student Employment

Working as a student employee at Dordt can benefit students in many ways, says Kyle Achterhoff, director of student employment.

A picture of a Dordt Student

Working as a student employee at Dordt can benefit students in many ways, says Kyle Achterhoff, director of student employment.

“We want to teach life skills through our student employment program,” he says. “It’s a great opportunity for students to earn extra money while at Dordt. They can choose to work anywhere from two to 20 hours a week, to help offset some of the costs associated with higher education.”

Dordt needs student employees to function, adds Achterhoff. Students work in all kinds of roles on campus, from grounds crew to residence life to help center staff. And there are employment opportunities on campus that relate directly to students’ future career paths.

Devyn Driesen is a senior graphic design major who worked for Dordt’s Marketing and Communication Office for two years. During that time, she took on more responsibility and even earned raises. She says that her on-campus work has helped her to gain skills that will benefit her post-college.

“I do a lot of design work for admissions and advancement, which involves creating postcards, fact sheets, and pieces for donors,” she says. “I’ve learned a lot about what goes into marketing and how many steps there are for one piece to be created.”

In May, Driesen began work as a graphic designer for Pluim Publishing, putting her design skills into practice—utilizing what she learned in the classroom and at her on-campus position.

Students work on a project in the digital media lab

Stephen Marques has held several different student employment positions during his time at Dordt. As a sophomore, he was a resident assistant (RA); during his junior year, he was a learning community assistant (LCA). As a senior, he worked for campus security.

“As an international student, being on a student visa, it’s a little bit harder to actually get a job,” he says. Being able to work for Dordt makes it easier for Marques and other international students to have an income while studying.

“I’ve been able to glean what has been the best way to communicate and how best to relate to people. It’s prepared me for how to go into the workplace and succeed,” says Marques. “Dordt does a good job of teaching you academics, which is important. But you also gain some practical knowledge that is often best learned through experience. At Dordt, you’re able to get both of those.”

God created us to work, says Achterhoff.

“Well before the fall, God worked,” he says. “He worked to create the world. He created Adam and Eve to work. There is biblical value; God sees value in the work, no matter what we do.”

“We need to look at work more from the angle of it being created before the fall,” adds Marques. “Work is good for us, particularly as Christians, to work and to work hard. Having an opportunity at Dordt to apply yourself in that way is positive.”

A picture of campus behind yellow prairie flowers