The College prides itself on having ample employment opportunities for all students who want a job , employing 70 percent of the student body over the course of a school year. But despite the jobs available on campus, a small number of students choose to take their talents to the surrounding area and work at businesses around Brunswick.
It is unclear exactly how many students hold off-campus jobs given their small number, but those who the Orient spoke to work at some of Brunswick's most beloved institutions.
For instance, this semester marks the first time a current student has worked at The Gelato Fiasco, Brunswick's famed gelateria. Cayla Liptak '14, started there this fall.
When asked about her motivation to seek an off-campus job, she said, "I love scooping ice cream and making desserts, and coming up with creations that are delicious and sweet, and there wasn't really a venue on campus that provided that."
Evelyn Dickinson '14, who works as a sales representative at the shoe store Lamey Wellehan in Cook's Corner, agrees that having an off-campus job provides a more interesting work environment than what most College-employed students find.
Dickinson is paid above minimum wage and also receives a commission.
"Campus jobs tend to involve very mundane, boring, routine things, whereas I have to take classes in order to sell the product," Dickinson said. "I also just really like shoes."
In addition to providing work that is more tailored to students' hobbies and interests, off-campus jobs tend to offer better pay and benefits than those at the College.
"Tips are awesome and that's a plus that I don't think I would get at any on-campus job," said Liptak.
Sam Sabasteanski '13 is a waiter at The Great Impasta, an Italian restaurant on Maine Street. A native of Brunswick, he has worked there for about three years. He says that tips make jobs off-campus worth it.
"That's one reason why you should definitely work off-campus," he said. "Even though they are hard to get, if you have an off-campus job as a waiter or something similar, a couple Fridays ago, I made $217 from 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. I absolutely could not have partied or studied in that time, but I also made a lot of money."
Off-campus jobs offer other perks largely unrivalled by their on-campus alternatives. Liptak mentioned that she can eat as much gelato as she wants or make herself lattes during her shifts. She can also suggest different flavors for the store to make.
Dickinson says the discounts at Lamey Wellehan are good and she occasionally gets a free pair of shoes.
By virtue of working in the Brunswick area, Dickinson said also gets more exposure to the surrounding community.
"Having a job off-campus doesn't necessarily mean that you get to know the community more, but the community gets to know you more," says Dickinson.
"I'm a sales rep, so I basically help a lot of people all the time," she said. "They're usually older members of the community who have been here forever and have stuck opinions, so it's nice for them to get a different view of Bowdoin students than they might get running into someone at, say, a bar."
According to students who work off campus, the fact that they attend Bowdoin comes up a lot.
Sabasteanski says, "It definitely dominates my conversations with customers."
Liptak adds, "I am often talking about Bowdoin, what I do here, and sports come up a lot."
Apparently, the status of being a Bowdoin student has not-so-secret benefits for people who work off campus.
"It's always really nice to see Bowdoin students, especially if they're with their parents, because then they tip me well," said Sabasteanski. "I do like to bring it up also if it's some little old lady with no connection to the College, because they'll say, 'You're such a good young boy, going to a nice school,' and they'll give you better tips."
Dickinson said, "It's something I usually bring up because it always helps me sell a shoe."