Going to college is expensive. For many students, simply covering the cost of tuition, fees, and room and board is a challenge. After paying those expenses, there may be little left in your budget. You need some spending money to fully enjoy the university experience. Going out with your friends, or just having pizza delivered to your dorm, requires cash. There are many ways students can make money while in college.
An array of part-time jobs is available on university campuses. They may not pay much, but usually can be crafted around your schedule of classes and school activities. You can work in an administrative office, the cafeteria, the library or another university facility. Sign up to be a residence assistant, in the dorms; or a professor’s assistant, grading papers and doing research. Find out if a custodian job is available. Fraternities and sororities often hire students to do housecleaning and other chores. Take part in a research study, or take notes in class and sell them. Some colleges hire students to give campus tours to prospective students, or conduct orientation sessions for incoming freshmen.
Parents are increasingly hiring tutors to help their children. Many university students also need assistance with their studies. There are always students, in high school and college, who require individual instruction in math, science or other subjects. You also may be able to give music lessons or assist kids with other artistic pursuits. Determine your strongest subject, then post flyers and perhaps advertise in a college publication. Check to see if there are any local tutoring services that hire students. Check out the Sylvan and Kumon tutoring services, and visit tutor.com.
In the Community
Other types of jobs may be found off campus, in the community. If your college is in a small town, you have fewer opportunities. You have to be creative, patient and persistent. Prepare a resume and learn good interviewing skills. You need to sell yourself to an employer, so do not be bashful about emphasizing your knowledge and skills.
Retailers frequently hire students for sales clerk, cashier and other positions. Many are willing to work around students’ schedules. Start by speaking with owners of stores selling things that you find interesting. Emphasize your knowledge of the products or services, as well as your customer-service skills. Check help-wanted advertisements in local newspapers and shoppers, as well as on Craigslist. Look at postings on bulletin boards and in college publications. Keep in mind that sales jobs that offer commissions pay better than standard part-time, minimum-wage work. Sales positions may be in shops, on the telephone or door-to-door.
Other ideas for working in the community include paid internships, work-study programs, delivering newspapers and donating blood. Among the jobs at private homes are babysitting, dog walking, lawn mowing, snow shoveling and house painting. Some students make money by running errands, like grocery shopping, for people. An elderly resident of the community may need a driver. Create an eye-catching flyer advertising your services, and post it in prominent locations around town.
Some students use their computers to earn money. Various websites offer opportunities to review products or services, and take part in focus groups or other market research. There are companies that will pay you to fill out opinion surveys, or evaluate products and services as a mystery shopper. Sites like Odesk and Elance list a range of online jobs, including article writing, web design and programming.
Back home in your old bedroom, or the attic or garage, you may have possessions with some value that you no longer want. Sell them on eBay or Craigslist. You also can make money by buying stuff at garage sales, yard sales and thrift shops that can be resold online. Sell other people’s items, too, and keep a percentage of the profit. If you are good at taking pictures, check out websites that pay for photographs. If you enjoy shooting videos, come up with an original idea for a YouTube channel to showcase your work.
You need to assess your strengths to determine the type of part-time work that is best for you. Your financial needs and college schedule also are factors. A part-time retail job is a good idea for those with strong communication and people skills, while more introverted students may prefer online work. Consider all the available options and see which ones match your interests. You just may find an enjoyable way to make money while in college.