Career Development

What Does a Student Assistant Do?

Find out what a student assistant does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as a student assistant.

Student assistants are part of the support staff at colleges and universities. They help professors with research, organize events, and perform other tasks to keep the school running smoothly.

Student assistants may be involved in a wide range of activities, from clerical work to assisting with classroom demonstrations or experiments. Their duties may also include helping students register for classes, answering phones, greeting visitors, etc.

Student Assistant Job Duties

A student assistant typically has a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Providing administrative support, including answering phones and greeting visitors
  • Providing general office support such as filing, photocopying, scanning documents, answering phones, and greeting visitors
  • Assisting with day-to-day operations of a department or office, including clerical tasks such as filing, data entry, and answering phones
  • Supporting teachers by taking attendance, distributing materials, answering questions, or helping with classroom management
  • Supporting athletic teams by assisting coaches with administrative tasks such as maintaining equipment inventories and tracking team statistics
  • Coordinating community outreach programs such as tutoring children or assisting with fundraising efforts
  • Performing special projects for faculty members, such as conducting research on topics related to the subject matter taught by the professor
  • Conducting research on topics related to the subject matter taught by the professor
  • Providing administrative support to faculty members in their departments, such as managing travel arrangements or ordering supplies for labs

Student Assistant Salary & Outlook

Student assistants’ salaries vary depending on their level of education, years of experience, and the type of work they do. They may also receive benefits, such as health insurance, 401k contributions, and paid vacation days.

  • Median Annual Salary: $47,000 ($22.6/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $115,000 ($55.29/hour)

The employment of student assistants is expected to grow at an average rate over the next decade.

Student assistants will be needed to provide basic administrative support to faculty and staff in colleges and universities. However, automation may limit the need for student assistants to perform simple tasks, such as photocopying or filing papers.

Related: Student Assistant Interview Questions and Answers

Student Assistant Job Requirements

A student assistant may be required to meet the following qualifications:

Education: Most student assistants have at least a high school diploma or GED certificate. Some employers prefer to hire student assistants who have completed some college-level courses. Some employers may also require an associate’s or bachelor’s degree.

Training & Experience: Student assistants often receive on-the-job training from their supervisors. This training may include learning how to use the organization’s computer systems, how to organize files and how to perform other tasks.

Certifications & Licenses: Student assistants do not need any certifications to obtain their position. However, some schools offer certifications that can make student assistants more appealing to prospective employers.

Student Assistant Skills

Student assistants need the following skills in order to be successful:

Organization: Organization skills can help you be more efficient in your job and complete tasks on time. You can use organization skills to keep track of files, paperwork and other records. You can also use organization skills to keep your workspace clean and tidy.

Time management: Time management is another skill that can be useful for a student assistant. You may be in charge of a variety of tasks throughout the day, so it’s important to be able to prioritize your work and make sure you complete everything on time.

Communication: Communication is another important skill for a student assistant. You may be communicating with faculty, students and other staff members, so it’s important to be able to speak with everyone effectively. You may also be in charge of relaying messages to others, so it’s important to be able to communicate clearly and concisely.

Flexibility: Flexibility is another important skill for a student assistant. You may be asked to work different shifts or fill in for other student assistants when they’re absent. Being flexible can help you adapt to changing schedules and responsibilities.

Attention to detail: Attention to detail is another important skill for a student assistant. You may be responsible for organizing files, maintaining records or keeping track of important information. Providing accurate information is important to ensure the success of the department or organization you work for.

Student Assistant Work Environment

Student assistants typically work in an office environment on a college campus. They may work in the admissions office, the registrar’s office, the financial aid office, or other administrative offices. Student assistants typically work 20 hours per week during the academic year and may work full-time during the summer months. Some student assistants may be required to work evenings or weekends to accommodate the needs of the office. The work of a student assistant is generally not stressful and offers a good opportunity to learn about the inner workings of a college or university.

Student Assistant Trends

Here are three trends influencing how student assistants work. Student assistants will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

More Focus on Student Success

As the education system becomes more focused on student success, schools and universities will need to find ways to support students in their academic and personal development.

Student assistants can play a key role in this process by providing support and assistance to students who need it. This can include helping with homework, organizing events, and providing guidance on college applications and other important decisions.

More Use of Technology in the Classroom

The use of technology in the classroom is becoming increasingly popular as teachers look for new ways to engage students and make learning more interactive.

Student assistants can take advantage of this trend by becoming familiar with different technologies and how they can be used in the classroom. They can then use this knowledge to help create more engaging lessons for students or provide support to teachers who are unfamiliar with certain technologies.

Greater Need for Collaboration

As schools become more focused on collaboration, the need for student assistants who can help facilitate this type of work will increase.

Student assistants can utilize this trend by developing skills that allow them to work effectively with others. This includes being able to communicate effectively, manage conflicts, and work together towards common goals. In addition, student assistants should also be prepared to handle any tasks that are assigned to them by their supervisors.

How to Become a Student Assistant

A student assistant career can be a great way to get your foot in the door of a company or organization. As a student assistant, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about different departments and gain experience working with people from all walks of life. You may also be able to take on additional responsibilities as you progress in your career.

If you want to become a student assistant, it’s important to first identify which companies or organizations you’d like to work for. Then, find out if they offer student assistant positions and what the requirements are. Additionally, make sure that you have the necessary skills and qualifications for the job.

Advancement Prospects

The best way to advance in this position is to gain more experience and knowledge in the field. Many student assistants eventually move up to become full-time employees at their respective companies. Some may even advance to management positions. The key is to be proactive and take on as much responsibility as possible. By doing so, you will not only gain the experience needed to advance, but you will also show your employer that you are capable of handling more responsibility.

Student Assistant Job Description Example

The Student Assistant will provide support to the team in all administrative tasks, including but not limited to answering phone calls, replying to emails, scheduling appointments, preparing documents and presentations, and performing data entry.

The Student Assistant will be expected to maintain a high level of confidentiality and professionalism at all times. He/she must be able to work independently and take initiative when needed. The ideal candidate will be organized, detail-oriented, and able to multitask.

This is an excellent opportunity for a current student who is looking to gain experience in a professional office environment.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Answer phones and take messages, or direct calls to appropriate staff
  • Greet visitors and provide them with assistance as needed
  • Perform clerical tasks such as filing, photocopying, transcribing, and faxing
  • Handle incoming and outgoing mail
  • Update and maintain databases and spreadsheets
  • Prepare PowerPoint presentations and other materials for meetings
  • Research topics and compile information as requested
  • Assist with event planning and coordination
  • Monitor office supplies and place orders when necessary
  • Help maintain a clean and organized work environment
  • Provide support to other staff members as needed
  • Complete other duties as assigned

Required Skills and Qualifications

  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Excellent communication, customer service, and time-management skills
  • Ability to work independently and with a team
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Google Docs, and social media platforms
  • Flexible schedule and ability to work around class schedules
  • Reliable transportation

Preferred Skills and Qualifications

  • College degree
  • Previous office or administrative experience
  • Experience managing budgets and expenses
  • Experience developing internal processes and filing systems
  • Comfortable handling confidential information
  • Ability to adapt to changing situations in a calm and professional manner


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