Thursday, January 24, 2019

The Best Ways to Make Money During College

Photo: Kendal McBurrows

Everyone has different needs on how they pay for college, but for me, it was important to have a side hustle while going to school. It helped out with my spending on food and utilities, and of course those books I didn't really need all that often. What I did every year was work a ton during the summer and winter breaks, and then just part time during the school year to focus on school and having a social life. From seeing my friends and other odd jobs, thankfully, there are many options to help pay for school.
On Campus Office Assistant
I know of multiple people, including myself, who have worked in an office during school. There are many benefits to this job - they are only open on weekdays and normal office hours, they're on campus and in close proximity, and they are (usually) not too stressful. I worked in admissions for a PhD program, and I know of friends who have answered phones for other admissions department, did paperwork, and worked in an athletic office. I was able to schedule my hours to fit my schedule and it was kinda close to my other classes!
On Campus Cafeteria Position 
Depending on the size of your school, they may be looking for people to work in the cafeterias. Since I went to such a large school, they were always hiring. I've heard good and bad things about working in the cafeteria, but I know people at my school received a free meal whenever they worked - not too bad of a deal! I think it's definitely a hit or miss with this position. 
Food Delivery
With the rise of services like Shipt and Peapod, this one is a hot option. I became a Shipt Shopper in September. Before applying, I would do research on the application process because it can be more competitive. I looked on reddit forums and applied - i was able to start working within the next week! A position like this is completely independent, and I was able to choose my hours and where I'd deliver to. There is a lot to learn, but personally, I like grocery shopping already, so it wasn't impossible. Be sure to use your customer service skills as communication is a huge part of this role!
Sell Unused Items
Notice that your clothes collection is growing too much? Have too many of one item? Utilize your school's Facebook Page or Facebook Marketplace - and be sure to be safe whenever exchanging or meeting someone. Also, sites like thredup, Poshmark, and Depop are popular sites to sell clothes and accessories - and of course, Plato's closet is an easy option, but it's a hit or miss with how much money you'll get in exchange for your items.
Babysitting and Tutoring
Signing up for an account on is free, and it's easy to see who is looking for someone to help babysit or tutor in the area. Again, definitely be safe in meeting new people, so ideally it'd be great to babysit or tutor for someone you know or a friend of a friend! This job could also lead to future reference letters and a great experience - you never know. 
Food Service
There are plenty of fast casual stops and restaurants around, so if you're info food service, making money through tips many be a good option. If you have a car, look off campus as well in neighboring towns for more options. Another good idea would be to work somewhere that doesn't serve dinner, if you did not want to work late hours!
Dog Walking and Tasks
Similar to using apps like Shipt, I know of friends who have made money on apps like Wag Walking and TaskRabbit. Wag Walking is great if you love dogs, and Task Rabbit offers a variety of options available. From putting together furniture to editing videos, you'll find something in your niche you can do. Currently, Task Rabbit is not in all cities, but looking for something similar would help in making extra cash.
Hopefully some of these ideas will help you buy some of those textbooks! Even if you're not in college, these are all great options on the side if you're looking for more ways to make money. I loved Shipt and working on campus when I had time, and it definitely forced me to be independent.

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