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May 5, 2006


Your summer job may keep you busy, but it probably doesn’t have you working for the dead. But that’s exactly what UMD Freshman Alexandra Evens get her summer cash from just that, working for the deceased.
If there is one thing a college student is, it’s busy. Even though they aren’t going to be any term papers to write, the work isn’t over. They trade in their books and backpacks for hairnets and little plastic name tags. That is, unless you’re like Evens and a few other students.
“When I tell people I design tombstones, they look at me like I’m joking,? said Evens, a Graphic Design major. “But seriously, that’s what I do.?
More specifically, Alexandra draws out, with a fine tip black marker, a picture that someone has requested go on their tombstone.
“I do a lot of farms, houses, and pets,? said Alexandra.
The drawings are impossibly detailed and she uses a light-up drawing table to help her with accuracy. They are then sent to the granite company that she works for and are then etched into the granite by another person or sometimes by a computer.
“It’s nice,? said Alexandra. “I work on my own time at home at my own pace.? Her job also pays a solid hourly wage of ten dollars.
Alexandra isn’t only a rare case because of the fact that she’s drawing grave markers, but also because she actually likes her summer job. This is not the case for a lot of students, like Lindsey Hippen.
“I cleaned hotel rooms,? said Lindsey, another UMD Freshman.
She calls it the job from Hell, Hippen was expected to thoroughly clean each room with a smile on her face. Each room was a whole new experience said Lindsey. While some were politely rumpled, others were completely trashed from the ceiling to the floor with puke caked along the bathroom floor from partier guests
“My mom called it a character building job,? said Hippen. “I don’t think I can handle anymore character.?
Even though her job required her to endure the most disgusting of situations, like finding human feces outside of the toilet, at demanding hours, every weekend 6am-5pm with only a half an hour for lunch, her paychecks left much to be desired. At minimum wage it was hardly worth her trouble.
“Quitting that God awful place was probably the single greatest day in my entire life,? said Hippen. “I don’t care if I end up working at McDonalds, it has to be better.?
Some students are going outside of food service and retail and they’re doing internships over the summer. Jonathan Mayer is one of these students.
“I’m doing research with one of my professors this summer,? said Mayer. While he is excited to branch out from his normal landscaping jobs, he still needs another source of income.
“I’m not sure exactly,? said Mayer. “It has to have flexible hours; that’s the only way it will work out.?
“As much as I just want to hang around the beach all summer, that’s not an option anymore,? said Jonathan. “I’ve so much crap going on all the time, and it all costs money.?

I looked extensively online to find job statistics of college students, but I could only find job opportunities and internships for students. I couldn’t find any information about how many students work in certain jobs.