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Let’s face it: college students need jobs. There’s rent to pay and food to buy. Also, if you are utilizing unsubsidized student loans, you owe it to your future self to start paying the interest on your student loans while still in school. The power of compound interest can be the kiss of death to the post-graduation repayment process.
Even the luckiest students who are on a full scholarship need extra money for recreation and food. In reality, the majority of college students will hold at least one part-time job while still in school whether out of necessity or not. If you are going to work while in college, you will want to find a job that pays you well. It should also allow you to have the flexibility you need to make school a priority. Let’s take a look at some high paying jobs for college students and some of the best part-time jobs for college students.
What are High Paying Jobs for College Students?
With limited time on your hands, it’s important to make the most out of the time you can spend working. Although most high paying jobs for college students are usually the most competitive, if you are willing to do what others aren’t, then you can open the door to plenty of opportunities. Even that isn’t a guarantee, however. Most of these will be part-time gigs if you’re a college student, but they’re in this list for their earning potential. Here are some of the highest paying jobs for college students.
- Server – When we say server, we aren’t talking about slinging hamburger patties at the local burger joint. If you want to make great money, you have to go where the food is fantastic and the bills are high. If you can land a coveted job in a high-end restaurant while in college, as little as ten hours of work on the weekends might last you throughout the week. Some high-end servers make as much as $300 a night or more.
- Freelancer – Do you know how to write code? Are you a stickler for grammar? Perhaps you’re a social media genius? Freelance work is an option that is sweeping through college campuses. In some cases, it can provide income that far exceeds what a student can make as a standard employee with a business. Go to freelancing websites to see what jobs are offered or put up a sign or business card on the local coffee shop bulletin board. This is possibly the most flexible kind of work you could ever sign up for.
- Personal trainer – No matter where your college is located, there are bound to be gyms nearby. You could work for one of these gyms, or you could venture out into the freelance market as a trainer. Personal trainers make a decent hourly wage if they work for themselves. If you have a fitness inclination, take it to the next level and offer to teach others what you know. However, keep in mind that most gigs require you to be a certified personal trainer which requires you to take a course and shell out some cash.
- Dog walker – You might be surprised that this one makes the list of highest-paid, but you shouldn’t be. The trick to earning great money as a dog walker is getting lots of clients and maximizing your dollar per hour. Based on your location, the average dog walker could charge just $5-$15 to walk a dog for half an hour. However, if you are able to get 4-5 dogs in the same neighborhood, you can make a good amount in just about 30 minutes. Also, if you love dogs, then you can probably appreciate this gig for more than just the money.
What are the Best Part-Time Jobs for College Students?
Most college students cannot, and should not, work full-time while also taking a full course load. It is important to limit the use of student loans to pay for your living expenses, but it is equally important to avoid burning yourself out physically and mentally. You don’t want to let your grades drop. If that happens, then you could end up dropping out and taking your student debt with you.
If you are ready to get to work without committing too many hours each week, let this short list of some of the best jobs for college students guide you. It should provide a few ideas on how you can work part-time and have both money and flexibility.
- Babysitter – Are you good with children? If so, consider either marketing yourself as a sitter or trying to find a position as a part-time nanny. One of the things that makes this a great part-time position for college students is that you are typically free to study once the kids go to bed until the parents get back home. If you can get a job like this that pays you for time you would already spend hitting the books, you know it’s going to end up on the best part-time job list.
- Mystery shopper – This one can be a bit difficult to come by. If you can snag a legitimate position as a mystery shopper, then you’ll make between $8-12 per hour. As an added bonus, mystery shoppers are usually given a stipend or a list of items with funds to pay for them – and they get to keep what they buy!
- Uber or Lyft driver – There are few jobs that provide the flexibility that ridesharing does. If you own your own car and enjoy driving around and meeting new people, then being a rideshare driver is a great option for a part-time job. When you want to work, you turn the rideshare app on. When you don’t want to work, you turn it off. Imagine never having to worry about schedules or requesting time off to study for final exams!
- Bartender – There are many reasons why this one makes the list of best part-time jobs for college students. First of all, being a bartender requires you to work mostly at night and on the weekends, which frees up your days to attend classes and study. Second, this part-time job is also one that is known to pay quite well. Many bartenders can make a couple of hundred dollars on a busy weekend night. Third, being a bartender allows you to still engage in social nightlife on the weekends, although you won’t be drinking yourself behind the counter. Still, this job is a perpetual favorite of college students.
Author: Jeff Gitlen