Earn some cold, hard cash in your off school and study time without even leaving your dorm room
When you dedicate yourself to 4 years of university or 2 years of college it generally means you can expect to be broke for equally as long. That’s a reality when you consider the high prices of tuition, student housing, food and textbooks…even if they’re cheap textbooks. However, it doesn’t have to be that way.
Many students seek out part time work to help supplement their income during school or to start paying back their student loans so they can have financial freedom upon graduating. Sure, there are plenty of places on, or near your campus that will hire college students.
But why expect the owner of your local diner to begrudgingly adapt to your study schedule when you can set your own schedule, working during your off class and study time, by taking an online job. In fact, the computer can be your starting point to money in your pocket. Start your job search in your own Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social networks by posting that you’re looking for a job.
The position can compliment your current skill set (e.g., if you have a knack with writing computer code) or it can match your future job aspirations (e.g., if you’re an English major hoping to work as a tech writer, you could offer your freelance writing services online). This way, you are earning money and also a jump-start on your future.
Here are 13 innovative ways to help students make extra money during college:
1. Sell your photos online
If you have a digital camera you’re already in business! Take advantage of your artistic talents by capturing images that can be sold as stock photography online to sites like Dreamstime.com, SnapVillage.com, Shutterstock.com, iStockphoto.com, Fotolia.com and BigStockPhoto.com. You’ll make money every time your stock photos are downloaded, and most sites will even let you retain a portion of your copyright.
2. Contribute as a freelance writer online
Are you English major or just a well written individual? Then take this as your opportunity to find plenty of places to publish your work online—not only to boost your portfolio, but also to make you some cold hard cash! Sign up for a few freelance blogs—there are thousands online that post the most recent freelance jobs listings every day of the week day. The great thing about writing for the web is that you can cater your writing to your interests. For instance, science majors can post to innovation blogs, nutrition majors can post to healthy eating sites, and students studying to be veterinarians can post to pet health sites. Writing jobs are broad and plentiful so you’ll be sure to find something that’s relevant to your studies. And the best thing about it—you can do it from the comfort of your dorm room!
3. Tutor other students online
If you excel at your chosen subject—be it Math, Science or even Kinesiology—you can be pretty sure there are other students out there who are struggling and would jump at the chance for some after-school help! Take this as a cue to set up your own tutoring services and charge a fee for each hour you spend teaching. The great thing about online tutoring sessions is that you can set up a simple Skype chat and tutor from your living room.
4. Sell tickets to school games and events
Is your university hosting a hot off-Broadway play? How about a rival college basketball or football game of the season? Everyone, including those that don’t go to your college, enjoy snagging tickets to games and events that they don’t get first picks at because they aren’t students. Since you get first pick at tickets, why not buy a couple of extra for really hot events and sell them online in Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist and Twitter for a small mark-up for your troubles?
5. Offer resume writing services
With things like resume writing, you can set your own hours and it will never interfere with your school work or study time. If your own resume is something of envy amongst your fellow students, offer to help them write their resumes for part time job search and work-study programs. You can offer a base fee per resume written or charge by the hour. Either way, you’re making cash in your off time.
6. Edit student essays
Another job you can easily do from your dorm or apartment is proofreading. There is an incredible demand for proofreaders among college students, and an online forum allows them to conveniently send it to you and have it sent back error-free and ready to hand in. Post an ad offering to proof student essays and assignments for clarity of content, spelling, grammar and syntax errors before they hand them in to a professor. A good grasp of writing language, grammar and spelling, as well as an eye for detail is all you need to excel at proofreading online.
7. Sell stuff you don’t want online
Are you or someone you love a yard sale junkie (I’m looking at you mom)? Look around that room of yours and find stuff you don’t want or use and sell it on Craigslist, EBay or Etsy. If you set up auctions (items go to the highest bidder) you can generate a pretty good income from selling items online—especially if they have collector or vintage appeal.
8. Take part in online studies
You live on campus—so there are a ton of research studies going on as I type this! Offer to take part in their studies for a small fee. Nothing crazy, just offer to let medical students pick your brain (not in the literal sense) or study your behaviors for a small payment each week or month.
9. Sell unique t-shirts
Sites like Zazzle.com and its imitators let you create a custom t-shirt design, post it and earn a percentage of the sales. Custom t-shirt designs are ideal for the arts student in you—and also a great way to get word out to establish your name in the art world.
10. Sell your class notes
You’re already sitting in class taking notes anyway, so why not see that as an opportunity and sell copies of those notes to less engaged students? Chances are one of them is dozing off beside you right now! If your notes are organized, clear and neat, many students would be willing to buy them as an extra study aid to cram for the final exam.
Blogging is an easy way to make money if you are like one of millions of young adults who blog about your passion (i.e., online games, technology, automobiles, travel or fashion—even school life). You can monetize your blog by partnering with an affiliate program (take for example Amazon who can post an affiliate link and sell travel guides to compliment your travel stories). The way it works is, whenever a reader on your blog clicks on the affiliate link—you get paid!
12. Be an online code monkey
Are you a computer engineering student or an aspiring software developer? Use your talents to take in some freelance software script writing jobs. Or offer to help small businesses with internet marketing services like SEO and link development.
13. Be a virtual assistant
A great work from home gig is the virtual assistant—and many large and small companies are using virtual assistants to help them work call centers, schedule appointments, and field responses to cold calls. The pay isn’t fantastic (on average $8 to $10 per hour), but you can work for companies oversees so you are assisting during your off school and class hours.