make money in college

25 Ideas on How to Make Money in College

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There is a lot to look forward to when going to college. It’s a great space to make lifelong friends and learn about a field that you’re interested in making a career out of. Being a college student is not without its challenges, however. Money is always tight and working some jobs isn’t possible without affecting your studies.

Luckily, there are ways for young adults to save money and make a little income with a flexible job. We’ll talk about some ideas on how you can pay for late-night pizza without it getting in the way of your goal of a college degree.

Find flexible part time jobs for college students on campus

The college campus is a great place to start when looking for extra cash. Campus jobs are flexible since the college knows that school comes first. Extra income opportunities are not limited to college campus jobs. Here are a few ways to make good money on campus.

1. Front desk attendant for dorms or offices

Among the best campus jobs as a college student is working as a front desk attendant. Various offices around campus need workers to handle tasks like greeting visitors, taking phone calls, scheduling appointments, and more.

There are no specific skills you need for these jobs other than good people skills. Especially in the case of dorm attendants, you can often do homework on the job.

2. Become a teaching assistant

A teaching assistant (TA) helps professors during class, helps students with assignments, and may even teach certain classes. Not only is it a great way to make extra money, but also a great way to get hands-on experience with teaching.

Some TA jobs are advertised on the campus jobs boards. But you often need an existing relationship with the professor. You’ll want to reach out to a professor that you want to TA for and explain your interest and qualifications.

3. Tutor students or edit their papers

Many departments have dedicated tutors to help assist students outside of class. To become a student tutor, you generally must have advanced knowledge in the area. So you’ll need to show that you know the subject well.

You’ll also need patience and be able to break down challenging concepts in a clear manner. To find tutoring jobs on campus, try contacting the department you’re interested in.

4. Dorm resident assistant or advisor (RA)

One of the best ways to make extra cash and work on your social/leadership skills is by becoming a resident assistant. These campus reps are responsible for building community among students and helping answer questions they may have about college.

Becoming an RA isn’t a walk in the park. You could be dealing with anything from homesick freshmen to drunk students calling in the middle of the night who can’t get into the dorms. Talk to a current RA or staff member in the campus residence office to find out more about this job.

5. Get a work study job 

When you submit your FAFSA to receive financial aid, you might also qualify for a work-study position on campus. Funded by the government, these campus jobs provide extra money while giving you time to get homework done.

College campuses with work-study programs have a variety of gigs including administrative and front desk work.

6. Become a campus tour guide

Are you a social butterfly that needs extra cash? Consider a gig as a campus tour guide. It’s a great opportunity to show your passion for your college and tell prospective students all about what it is like to be on campus.

7. Work in campus dining or recreation center

Another way to make extra spending money is working at the campus dining or rec center. If you work in college dining, you’ll learn about food handling and the various local health codes. Tasks may include putting together food (i.e. a sandwich) and restocking the prep station.

For those that enjoy fitness, you can opt to make extra money at the rec, swimming pool, or gym. Work at the rec center may include cleaning equipment, teaching a class, working at the front desk, or becoming a lifeguard.

8. Sell your textbooks

Maybe you’re not all that interested in leaving your dorm room or a consistent campus job. A way to make quick cash is by selling your textbooks. When you’re done with a class and don’t want to keep that heavy hardcover, get online. Sell your textbooks on websites like Chegg and Amazon to coffee those afternoon coffee fixes during exam week.

9. Apply for scholarships

An easy way to miss out on free money and increase your student loan debt is not applying for scholarships. In high school, you may have applied for scholarships and received one from the college you were accepted to.

But don’t end your scholarship search there. Keep applying for more scholarships throughout your college career. Your few hours of effort could lead to big bucks!

10. Gig economy jobs for college students

Gig jobs are a great way for college students to make some quick cash. You can work around your school schedule and the only skill you typically need is good customer service.

11. Delivery driver for local restaurants or Postmates and Doordash

With a car, you can deliver everything from packages to restaurant meals around the city. Delivery apps like Postmates and DoorDash are easy to sign up for. Pick up a few jobs on weekends or when you’re out running other errands is a great way to earn a little extra money while getting outside of campus.

12. Drive for Uber or Lyft

Ride-sharing apps like Uber or Lyft are another great way to make use of your car to earn extra income. You must meet the minimum requirements to become a driver. For example, Uber requires that you have at least three years of driving experience if you’re under 23.

13. Become a TaskRabbit

TaskRabbit is another app that people use to get things on their to-do list done. You could be picking up groceries, assembling a table, or picking up catering. Use the app to find and apply for jobs, then get paid!

14. Become a pet sitter, dog walker, house sitter, or babysitter

 If you’ve had pets or babysat in high school, you could work as a sitter. Busy families often need help with taking their dogs out for exercise while at work. Or when families go out of town on vacation, they may need a house sitter to collect mail, bring in the trash, and do other housing activities.

Part time jobs for college students

Working off-campus is a tried and true way for college students to make money. Be sure that when you’re earning a regular income make a habit of paying yourself first by saving a portion. Starting that habit before graduating from college will set you up for success afterward.

15. Work in a grocery or retail store

As a student, it’s relatively easy to find work at a retail or grocery store. You’ll do work like ringing up purchases, bagging orders, assisting customers, and cleaning. Keep in mind that these jobs usually require nights and weekends, so make sure you manage your time well.

16. Become a server or bartender in a restaurant

Another typical student job is working at a food establishment. Servers will take customer orders, bring out their food, and refill beverages. To work as a bartender, you must be at least 21 and have experience mixing drinks. Working at a restaurant may be better than figuring out cheap ways to meal prep when you’re busy with school and work.

17. Join or start a moving or painting company

If you’re a student that prefers working summers when you’re free from class, consider a moving or painting job. Summer is a popular time for people to paint their homes or move. With a few of your friends, you can even start your own company and maximize the money earned.

18. Landscaping, mowing or snow

Do you like getting your hands dirty and doing physical work? Get a job landscaping homes and businesses, mowing lawns, or snow removal to get a workout with your cash. It’s also a great way to relieve the stress of projects, tests, and assignments.

19. Get an internship

 Many paid internships pay well above the minimum wage. Plus, you can gain some real-world experience in your field of study. Check out your department for help finding an internship. Many colleges also host internship fairs.

Make money online while in college

You don’t have to leave your dorm (or bed for that matter) with online jobs. There are many opportunities to make money online without any type of investment other than your time. Here are a few things to look into below.

20. Become a freelance writer, designer, marketer or developer

Use your hard skills in writing, designing, marketing, or coding to help businesses fill a need. When your college major is relevant to this type of work, you’ll also build a solid portfolio. For example, creating websites and ads for various businesses are paid projects that complement your graphic design degree.

21. Find a data entry or customer service remote job

Remote jobs have particularly been on the rise since 2020. Even a student can snag a remote job in customer service or data entry. You’ll need strong typing and people skills to handle these types of jobs.

22. Sell products on Amazon, eBay, Poshmark, Craigslist, Etsy or Facebook

Platforms like Facebook Marketplace, Etsy, Craigslist, and others make it possible for even a college student to sell products online. If you are a maker, you can sell just about anything as long as you find a solid niche.

23. Get paid to take surveys, complete tasks and watch videos online

Online surveys from websites like Survey Junkie and Inbox Dollars allow you to earn gift cards or cash. Many of these platforms also pay for activities like watching videos online or completing tasks.

24. Become a virtual assistant through sites like Upwork

To become a virtual assistant, you’ll need good project management skills to handle a variety of work. Websites like Upwork are marketplaces that bring businesses that need help in categories like virtual assistants and freelance workers to fill those roles. You could do anything from managing social media accounts, scheduling meetings, and replying to emails.

25. Start your own website and make money with advertising and affiliates

You don’t need to know how to code a webpage these days with easy webpage builders. This allows everyone from college students to stay-at-home moms to create their own website. Use your website to create content on topics you’re interested in and promote via social media. You don’t need to generate tens of thousands of followers to make good money through affiliate marketing.


Most college students find that federal student aid isn’t enough to cover the cost of attending school. Taking out student loans is the most common solution. However, if you can make a little extra cash to cover textbooks, food, or other college expenses, it reduces the loan amount you need.

Making extra money looks a lot different from what it did even a decade ago thanks to technology. It’s even possible for kids to earn a little extra that doesn’t include completing home chores. Try out one of these methods to make money while in college that best suits your needs. There’s an opportunity that is right for every student. 

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