Students share experiences working during holidays

Several Marshall students shared their experiences working Black Friday under unusual circumstances, and balancing school during a pandemic. 

Noel Edmunds, a Marshall Freshman and Yankee Candle employee said working Black Friday is always hectic. 

“Working Black Friday is exhausting but also fun and exciting at the same time,” Edmunds said. “The people are always in a way better mood or are just being dragged along, but the happier ones always make working Black Friday fun.” 

Edmunds said Black Friday during coronavirus looked entirely different. 

“This year working Black Friday was way different than my previous year in retail,” Edmunds said. “I got to the mall at six in the morning and there were no lines or big crowds like previous years, it was oddly calm. The mall picked up towards the later hours, but certain stores like my own, stay at a good pace all day especially considering we only allowed five in the store at a time, there was rarely a line.” 

Edmunds said balancing a job and focusing on school is a challenge.  

“Balancing school and work is difficult, especially because we are now doing virtual school,” Edmunds said. “During the holiday season, school and work are very difficult because I work an even larger amount and also have projects due for my college classes.” 

Katie Hill, a Marshall junior and Home Depot employee said working Black Friday was very memorable this year. 

“Over the holidays, I work in the appliance department at Home Depot,” Hill said. “Normally the sales in the morning are crazy, but due to coronavirus, the Black Friday deals have been running most of the month and into the first week of December. Working Black Friday this year was overly difficult due to our order systems being down.” 

Aaron Jackson, a Marshall University freshman and Fireside Grille employee, said working in a restaurant can also get busy during Black Friday. 

“An aspect of Black Friday people do not often think about is the restaurant business,” Jackson said. “Things have been weird this year because of coronavirus and the limited capacity, but we still remained pretty steady in spite of that.” 

Jackson talked about what it is like to balance school and work during a pandemic. 

“Balancing school and work can be very difficult,” Jackson said. “Sometimes I wake up and am very tired and do not want to get on my classes but do it anyway. It is nice not having to drive to campus in my first year and just do it from home, but I also am bummed that I am missing out on the campus lifestyle.” 

These students are a few examples of the many students who work jobs and attend school, shining a light on the duality of being a college student.  

Alex Jackson can be contacted at [email protected].