Each year, Notre Dame and Saint Mary's students are faced with the decision of whether to work on campus, off campus or even at all. According to Notre Dame financial aid counselor Jeremy Mayernik, both work options are popular among students. He said that at Notre Dame, campus employment for students usually remains consistent at 40.Saint Mary's associate director of financial aid Linda Rakow said she sees similar statistics. Approximately 44 percent of Saint Mary's students were on last month's payroll, she said."On-campus student employment at Saint Mary's does vary from month to month," Rakow said.For those who do not choose to work on campus, there are a variety of off-campus work options to select from in the South Bend area.Although he is aware that many students seek this option, Mayernik said there is no way to measure the exact number of those who do.Saint Mary's associate director of career opportunities Jeff Roberts said he maintains direct contact with students employed off campus."Off-campus work is great because it expands student awareness of the world around them," Roberts said. "It creates a complimentary balance between what they experience as a student and real life."Those students who find better opportunities in off-campus employment cite a variety of motives for leaving campus including income, location and personal reasons.Saint Mary's junior Abby Sauers works at Malibu Tanning Salon. She has held her current position for a year, and has been working off campus for two years. Living off campus, Sauers said she opted for an off-campus job out of convenience."Working off campus, you can work more hours. Right now, I work between 25 and 27 hours a week," she said. "The only downside is that you can't do homework on the job like you could on campus."Sauers said the extra money is an added bonus to working off campus. She currently makes $7 an hour plus a monthly commission, but said work is not something she is financially forced to do.However, some students find they need to work to pay bills and other expenses.Saint Mary's junior Lindsay Markin found off-campus employment to assist with payments from a car accident. Markin worked at the Gap for five months, long enough to get the money needed for repairs."The Gap was closer to me, living off campus," she said. "Also, you get a discount at other stores besides the Gap."Notre Dame junior Adrian Velez works off campus at Wal-Mart in the home and garden section. "I spent last semester abroad, and so all the on campus jobs were taken right away when I got back," Velez said.Working at Wal-Mart is more than a school year job for Velez, however. He currently has an internship that will lead to a management position within the company.Sarah Waugh, a junior resident assistance at Saint Mary's, works part time at American Eagle. In previous years she has worked on campus at the dining hall and in the English department. Waugh said she now works off campus because it helps her to leave campus once in a while."I work at least 10 hours a week and sometimes as many as twenty," she said. "The schedule is more flexible, and I get as many hours as I want."Regardless of where students choose to work, Roberts offers advice."Working can be a good thing while in college because it helps students learn time management and can help to further a student's career," he said. "Students who work can expand their professional network in different ways than students who don't work. But it is important for each student to make the decision of whether to work and where to work for him or herself."