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Lemberg more akin to play than work-study

By Katarina Weessies

Section: Features

September 9, 2016

There are many interesting work-study opportunities at Brandeis University, a particularly noteworthy one offered at the Lemberg Children’s Center. Lemberg is a daytime childcare and early education center that serves young children, toddlers and infants. Brandeis students with work-study have the opportunity to be a teaching assistant (TA) for Lemberg staff. TAs are typically assigned to a specific age group and then interact with and help supervise the children in that age group.

Lily Elderkin, a junior at Brandeis, has been a TA at Lemberg since her freshman year. She currently works with children who are three years old or younger. Elderkin says that she learned about Lemberg from her freshman year roommate and immediately knew that she wanted to work there.

“I have always worked well with kids, and I enjoy the opportunity to unplug from the stresses of the world by interacting with young, happy kids,” she says.

Elderkin describes herself as “grateful” for the work-study program because of the financial help it provides, though having a work-study job does further strain her already hectic schedule. Elderkin works eight hours a week at Lemberg, takes four classes—not including her gym class—and has two leadership roles on campus.

Like many Brandeis students, Elderkin works hard to juggle all of her responsibilities. She explains that she manages her time by packing her weekdays with “as many meetings as possible” and being “flexible with scheduling.” The extra responsibility of the work-study job requires her to prioritize her commitments and consider which of her responsibilities are most important to her.

Despite the extensive time commitment, Elderkin loves working at Lemberg. She says that her favorite thing about her job is “the kids.” She adds that “eventually, the kids will remember you and get excited when they see you at the beginning of the day. After a while, you even develop inside jokes with the older kids.” The children at Lemberg provide Elderkin with a fun and exciting outlet to relax and interact with others—they are what make her long hours of work worthwhile.

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