How do I earn money and study?!

Sophie Fisher Sophie Fisher / Wellington campusLeave a Comment

If you’re anything like me, the two questions you will be asked most frequently is:

1) Where are you going to work when you finish studying?

2) How do you manage to earn money and study?

The answer to the first question is ever-changing with every new placement, and the second answer….with great difficulty!


Whatever your study, fitting work into your timetable is one of the hardest things you have to do, and it’s made even harder when you study something with an important practical component like Nursing.   When you’re on Nursing placements, you have to consider it a full time job, and working shifts Monday – Friday, then going to your other paying job during the weekend definitely takes it out of you. I’m very lucky to have worked at my part time job for eight years, and they have been amazing in letting me take annual leave during placements, but my leave ran out well before placements were over, meaning I had to figure out how to juggle the two. Taking unpaid leave is always an option, but I quite enjoy having somewhere to live and food to eat!

Here are some ideas on funding your way through each year:

  1. Studylink is always going to be your first port of call when figuring out how to fund your study. Figure out what your eligible for and apply for it all. They may be a tedious organisation to deal with, but knowing that even if I’m not working for a couple of weeks, I still have money coming in to pay my rent and expenses is a way to relieve some stress


  1. SAVE!! Working all summer holidays might be the last thing you want to do, but it’s a good idea to go into each year of study with some savings behind you. I was surprised when I first moved out of home, at how expensive everything is when you have to pay for it all yourself. I have been saved on numerous occasions by my savings when something I hadn’t budgeted for popped up. For instance I am terrible at remembering to pay my car registration until the very last minute, which is always a non-pay week!
  1. Apply for scholarships! There are literally hundreds of scholarships available, find anything you may be eligible for and send in applications for everything, you never know what you can get until you try! For nursing a great place to start is NZNO (which everyone should belong to)! They have a whole bunch of scholarships; one particular good one is their NERF book grants, which can be applied for twice a year, this is a great way to get all the textbooks you need that always cost millions of dollars. givMe (aka: Breakout) is another good website to have a look at, use the link below and your Massey login, and you can look through a database of over 4000 scholarships, it can take some time to sort through them all, but it’s well worth it!

Links for scholarship websites:

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NZNO Scholarships

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givME (formerly Breakout)

  1. One last tip, that is not so much about earninfg money, but how to make it go round, is to create a budget. You will have gathered by now that I am a crazy organiser, but this is the only way that I successfully remember to pay my bills, and have enough food money at the end of the week. As one of my biggest outgoings is food :), I always create a meal plan, and only shop for what I need for the week, and as long as my flatmates don’t eat my food I’m good for the week and don’t make multiple supermarket trips which sucks up all my money!
    This is the same one as I use, and keeps me organised, otherwise I will forget what I planned :P

    This is the same one as I use, and it keeps me organised, otherwise I will forget what I planned 😛

Sophie Fisher

Sophie Fisher

Hi, I’m Sophie and I’m a second year Nursing student at Massey’s Wellington Campus. I’m in my early twenties, and have come to nursing a bit later, as I had an interesting start completing a Bachelor of Arts in Politics, International Relations and Geography (although I can’t navigate a map…). I am originally from Masterton, and in my spare time, which is not very often, I like to go to the gym, walk at the beach near my flat, and go out with friends for dinner and drinks. When I can, I love to head home and get out of the busy city life. I look forward to sharing my thoughts on university life and everything I have learnt from my few years as a student!