Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, a countless number of people have lost their jobs. This increase in joblessness is even affecting college students.
Art history and painting double major Jordan Seyer lost her job at the Brick City Gallery due to the pandemic. She was also a studio monitor in the Art & Design department.
Seyer said she managed to get unemployment, but it was not through her Missouri State University jobs. Instead, she was approved for unemployment by a hometown store she worked at during school breaks.
But the government has yet to actually pay her.
“I got approved for unemployment through that job since Missouri State is not required to file student worker wages through the state, so there’s pretty much no state record of me working on campus,” Seyer said. “I was lucky to get approved through a previous job, unlike many students who didn’t get approved at all. While I was approved on April 6, I have yet to receive any payments from unemployment because of processing issues.”
Seyer said the biggest challenge during this time is where her unemployment will come from. Her roommate was not approved for unemployment, and neither of them were approved for the university’s emergency funding.
She said it could be anywhere from two to four weeks for her unemployment to be processed.
Seyer said the “upside” is she will be back-paid for every week she filed unemployment. She will also be getting her job back next year since she is a work-study student.
“Since I’m a work-study student, I do have an allocated budget for working,” Seyer said. “I just got approved for work-study for next school year, and I notified my boss about it, and she’s super excited to have me back next year. This will be my third year working at the Brick City Gallery, and I’m really happy to be going back, that is if COVID-19 doesn’t keep campus closed.”
For those who lost their jobs and will not regain them, Missouri Job Center spokeswoman Katherine Trombetta said the Springfield center will reopen on May 26 to “assist job seekers in finding employment and connecting them to training opportunities.”
The center is located at 2900 E. Sunshine Street and 1443 North Robberson.
Trombetta said workers uncertain about work can contact their employers to see if the job has any work that can be done remotely. Workers who also refuse to return to work even if called would be “for the most part” denied unemployment benefits. This is known as a “voluntary quit” by the Missouri Department of Labor.
Though there are exceptions, which can be found at labor.mo.gov.