(This is a guest article by Cody*)
Attending college is an exciting time of life with many new adventures. Attending class, studying, networking, walking around campus and doing whatever else is fun these days. One of the least attractive ideas is finding a part time job when you could be attending football games or going to a party, but it is something that is nearly essential to fund your college experiences and to set you up for your post graduate life. I have assembled 10 great ideas or ways to earn a part time income while attending your university.
Have a skill? There are many different avenues of free lance such as writing, photography, videography, graphic design, art, and web design. The best idea would be to start local to get your feet on the ground and then to try to either move to larger (better paying) companies or online. Free lancing is great for several reasons – it enhances your skill set, gives you better responsibility because the task is entirely dependent on you from start to finish and you establish what you will and won’t take on. This means you set your price, time tables and expectations. Start by doing a little research and finding a couple local areas that could really use your service, create a pitch explaining how you will help them for a low price, contact the target, get the contract and get to work!
Many tutoring services are quite expensive. Therefore, if you look around you will find people looking for tutoring either for themselves or their children. Look for flyers or on your local / university job boards and you are bound to find several people looking for tutoring. The amount you make per hour is usually around minimum wage or slightly above, but it also sounds great during interviews and can help you create some nice connections with people who can give some great referrals if you do a good job.
Be a Lab Technician
Boring, monotonous and grunt work? Sure, but the key is that these positions are usually plentiful on a college campus. With these positions being somewhat available and fewer people wanting the position there is a higher chance of you obtaining one of these positions. While you may find the work to be arduous, it can be a skills booster as well as looking decent on a resume. Also, the hours are usually up to you so that’s a bonus!
Internships are my personal favorite. I worked at a fortune 100 company for my internship, the pay was great, the experience was priceless and my opportunities after graduating were phenomenal. I applied for four positions at well recognized companies after graduating and received an offer for each position, in a down economy. This sounds like I am bragging, but I am not, the point is that if you look hard, do your research, snag that internship and excel – you have set yourself up for a very long time.
Blog or write for the local paper
Many local communities either have a campus, local or city paper or website. You are college educated or in the process. You write a ton of papers already, why not get paid for it. Most of these positions will pay minimum wage, but you are in college so that is almost to be expected. If you really like writing you will be able to point to this position when either free lancing or giving references for better writing gigs later on.
Babysit or dog walk
My wife was a nanny and dog walker for the four years she attended college. We are now very close to the families she worked for and have made many great experiences. The work develops many different life skills if you ever plan on being a parent of dog owner. The pay was decent while being a nanny and we are saving bundles from all the tips she learned for our first born.
Community Clean up
This is one of the areas you do not often hear about. The pay is usually very low if at all, but is very meaningful and you are directly impacted. I am sure you pass garbage in your community plenty of times. Well, the good news is there is usually a group or government program that will pay you to clean it up. Reach out to your local government and find out what can be done. They may tell you they have crews who do the cleaning already, but you can do it for free. If you get that answer and want to get paid, reach out to local businesses. You will often find many local owners willing to shell out a small amount of cash to make their area look a lot nicer to their customers and everyone else.
Buy and Sell Books
This seems simple and obvious. Instead of selling your books at the bookstore for a fraction of the cost look to amazon and ebay. You will often times redeem almost full value if you purchased your books from those sites. Then do yourself one better and tell your friends who were just going to go to the bookstore that you will sell their books for them and give them a small margin of profit over what the bookstore would give them.
This one can take some start up time if you do not have any training, but you can easily become a virtual assistant for clients by going to AssistU or other virtual assistant sites. You can get the training and then reach out to potential clients who will pay for your administrative services. You will need to have some usuable skills for this, but it is a job that is all about convenience.
Amazon’s Mechanical Turk
I have used this system and was able to accrue around seven dollars an hour if I had my full attention toward the work. It is very simple and can be done whenever and wherever you desire. If you hit some hard times or want to add a little side cash on top of your job mechanical turk is a guaranteed way you can make a little money. You can find more information at www.mturk.com
*About the author: This is a guest article by Cody. If you liked this article please read more of Cody’s work at The Million Dollar Mission which focuses on personal finance, success and career development.
*Image Credit: Photograph by derfel [via Flickr Creative Commons]
This article has been featured in the Carnival of Personal Finance
(This is a guest article by Cody*)