CASH program continues helping students

CASH helped to create more than 240 part-time positions on campus.
With the Campus Augmenting Student Hires program, Amanda Nell, senior coordinator of student employment at the MU Career Center, organizes student jobs on campus and within the community through sources, such as Although the university is experiencing a hiring freeze, the program has helped turn things around by promoting more student jobs.

In response to financial hardships faced by students and departments on campus, the MU Economic Downturn Work Team, the Division of Student Affairs and the Career Center collaborated to establish the Campus Augmenting Student Hires program, which encourages departments to employ students by offering to pay half their salary, up to $500 per semester.

"I'm proud of the university," said Amanda Nell, a student service coordinator for the Career Center, who has been working with the program since its inception. "We're one of the few universities in the country who has responded to the economic hardships faced by our students and families."

The CASH program, which began in August, is responsible for the creation of more than 240 part-time positions in more than 60 departments, all of which have been filled by students, according to an MU News Bureau news release. Its goal is to create job opportunities for students struggling to finance their education, as well as provide departments with affordable help.

All students are eligible for jobs created through the CASH program, regardless of financial need.

"We did that because students have loans, tuition and other expenses to cover," Nell said.

Sophomore Shannon Montanez, who has been employed by the Institute of Public Policy since September, said she wanted the job because it helped her decide if her major was right for her.

"More importantly, I had bills to pay and getting a job was imperative," she said.

Robin Walker, coordinator of communications, external relations and career services at the graduate school, was not able to move forward with plans to initiate a database of outstanding graduate students, update the Web site or create a series of publications due to budget constraints. The CASH program enabled her to hire journalism senior Samantha Abbott.

"In a very short time, she has established the database and updated our Web content with numerous student profiles," Walker said. "I was able to meet all three objectives and realize outcomes I did not envision."

The CASH program also helps students find jobs related to their desired careers.

"If it weren't for this program, I would probably still be working in the dining hall, which is a fine job but not something that would give me the valuable experience I'm obtaining from working as the Web content writer for the graduate school," Abbott said. "Regularly writing for the Web and communicating with students and faculty is such great experience and will look great on my resume for when I am looking for employment after graduation in May."

Nell said only part-time, newly created positions in departments funded by MU are eligible to receive CASH funds.

"We were able to create a new position that was focused on donor relations," said Justin Roberts, coordinator of special events and donor relations for the College of Education.

Roberts said the student employed in his department contacted donors and made a real impact.

"One donor in particular said this was the first student thank you call he received in years and was very impressed," Roberts said.

The CASH program posts and updates new job openings daily on Nell said students could also be proactive by asking departments if they have taken advantage of the CASH Program.

"This is a situation that is beneficial to everyone," Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Cathy Scroggs said. "Students are able to find work, and campus departments have additional help to get the work done."

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