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Ways To Make Money In College for Undergraduates

Money is needed to cover tuition fees, living expenses, transportation, books, dinning, and other essential expenses. Hence, it is very important to make money for most college students. There are many ways to make money in college. You can choose to work on-campus or off-campus or choose another route depending on your need and convenience.

I was an international student, and so I wasn't allowed to work off-campus, and hence, I had to look for on-campus jobs to make extra cash. Libraries, dinning halls, cafeterias, and administrative offices are always looking for students, who can work part-time, and so they are the best places to go to for applying for jobs. Library is a great option, especially if you get hired as a receptionist at the front desk. I used to see students who worked as security check assistants, doing their homework or projects while doing their job simultaneously. However, most of the students, who got hired for those jobs were work-study students. You can apply for work-study and get jobs around the campus as laboratory assistants also.

On-campus paid research internships are not a very popular option among undergraduate students because they are rare. But, if you can get one of those, you will find they are a great opportunity to gain knowledge, spike up your resume and add cash into your wallet. Another not so popular option is to be a tutor or test grader. You can choose to be a private tutor to other students or can also sign up to be tutor with the university.

Off-campus jobs are also a great way to make money, especially if you have your own transportation. Many small cafes and restaurants, book stores, malls, electronic or general stores, etc. are great places to apply for jobs. Many of my friends used to work at these places on the weekends and only a couple of days on the weekdays and still used to make pretty good cash.

Paid internship is another great option. Paid semester, winter or summer internships pay you to acquire knowledge and excel. Many universities sponsor career fairs, where students can go to introduce themselves and submit their resumes to different companies for securing an entry-level position. I met many students who started out as interns, gained experience, secured higher positions and pursued their careers with the same company even after graduation. The only minus to this option is the requirement of transportation. You could use the public transportation if it's available, but it can get a little taxing to maintain your schedule because of the time constraints.

You can also choose to work as an online freelancer. There are many areas you can choose. You can choose to write or pursue a different route. Online freelance work is a great way to earn cash. It is convenient as it requires no transportation or other expenses other than a computer and Internet connection. Many students are choosing this option for its convenience aspect.

It can be hard to pay for all the college expenses even with student loans and help from the family, and so it is smart to look for options that can get you some extra cash, which also can make your college experience a lot better.




Tomochka's picture

choose a job wisely

As a student living in a rental apartment, I cannot have pets.  However, I always used to have one.  Petting a furry friend is scientifically proven to reduce stress and boost up happiness hormones. That is why I was so happy when I found an online listing for a job at a local canine breeders place. I did not even know it existed, but I was hired, and have been working there for almost a year now.  I have a weekend work schedule, so I get maybe about 14-15 hours a week.  I used to work as a waitress before, but it interfered with all of my other activities, and I was constantly angry. 

I want to advise those students that are thinking about getting part-time jobs, try to choose the one that would keep your inner peace.  It is hard to find a decent job now in this economy for people with degrees, but it is still possible.  Also, do not forget to assign priorities. If your work schedule/stress has a great negative effect on your school performance, you probably should think twice before going back there.  What is more important: your boss yelling at you to clean up a table or a coming final exam? Part-time jobs are great, but remember about your studies.

shelbymary's picture

These are all great ways to

These are all great ways to make money while enrolled as a college student! I currently have an on-campus job, and I love it! It's convenient and it pays well, and it's super flexible; they understand that my workload comes first, and they're always willing to cater to that!

The other method I use to make money on this list is freelance writing. There are always people looking for new projects to complete; it's just up to you to seek them out! Freelance writing can be fun, and most of the time, you end up learning a lot from it! I would definitely recommend it to anyone who has a little free time and wants to pursue a career in writing.

Another great way to make money is through scholarships. While this money goes directly towards schooling costs, it will definitely help to ease your financial burden and allow you to use some of your personal cash on yourself rather than on school books or whatnot. There are always scholarships available to apply for! Deadlines are constantly coming and going, so join a few scholarship websites and have them email you when new scholarship opportunities become available! Some scholarships don't even require you to write anything; just fill out a form and enter a random weekly drawing! You'd be surprised at the kind of money you could make if you really looked for the opportunities.

Kassandra1408's picture


find it difficult to keep a “normal” job. I don’t enjoy rudeness, if I treat someone with respect, I expect nothing less. However, in the fields I’ve worked in, being an entry level, and mostly dealing with customers, I received an earful of nasty comments.  Besides, I can’t stand still for an entire shift, part-time or not. I need to interact with others, to make myself useful, to come up with new ideas. Maybe I’m too eager, but someday, I’ll find an employer who appreciates that.

Until then, I plan to freelance. I see it as a viable option: I have full control over my work hours, I am at liberty to choose the projects I work on, I’m independent so I can’t be fired and opportunities are pretty much all around me.  So what do I do exactly? Well, I offer my skills to potential employers. But what does that mean? Well, I’ve had typing projects, content writing projects, virtual assistant projects, and essay writing projects.  It’s a lot of fun and a great way to earn some extra money.

What has it taught me? I’ve learned to be tough and thick-skinned. The beginnings are always the most difficult, it’s easy to get intimidated by those who have more experience, but quitting, for me, was never an option. I’m also better at multi-tasking and time management. 

emontgomery's picture

Freelancing Is a Great Idea

This is such a great idea.

This semester, I discovered how much more expensive a university is compared with a community college. I had very little money left when classes began. Moreover, my new school was giving me less hours as a tutor. I had to think of something fast in order to survive.

Recently, I began scouring the internet for any type of freelance work I could find. I’ve come across online tutoring companies. I’ve been editing transcripts and writing articles, and this is just the beginning. As my reputation grows, people actually seek me out for my services.

Granted, it’s tough to balance work and school. I have to think carefully about my availability and what assignments are due before I accept a project, but it helps.