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A Day in the Life of a TA

During the fall semester of my junior year of college, I had the opportunity to take a class on campus that got me certified as an Excel Specialist. I liked it so much that I signed up to take the advanced version of the class in the spring, which got me certified as an Excel Expert. The main reason I took the classes was to help boost my resume as a business major. Many employers today value prospects that are proficient in Excel, and I wanted to try to set my self up as best as possible for graduation. What I did not realize was that, because I took these classes, I was now going to be able to make money on campus as a student.

When I took the Excel class, the Teacher’s Assistant was one of my friends. She graduated in the spring, though, so the instructor needed to find a new assistant to help with grading. My friend recommended that I be the new TA, and after talking through the expectations with the instructor, I decided to accept the offer. I am so glad I did, because the experience has been great.

Because I have a light course load this semester, I have enough time to be able to do the work that is required of me without feeling overwhelmed. Because the class is all online, there is really not a lot of work for me to do as most assignments are graded automatically by the course’s software. All I need to do is grade a couple of the longer, more intensive assignments when the students have them, but it does not take more than two to four hours per week.

This low commitment position has been great for two reasons. It helps keep me sharp on my knowledge of Excel so that I can still be up to date on the software when I graduate, and because it is a paid position, it gives me spending money that I can use throughout the week.

If you get to college and end up really liking one of your classes, I would recommend reaching out to the instructor to see if they need a TA so that you can get paid for staying up to date on a subject that you find to be interesting.

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