College Students

Tuition Loan Bill Coming Soon? Here's Some Useful Data on Putting Your College Kid to Work (Infographic).

For cash-strapped students, the holidays aren't just for Netflix binge-watching. They're a chance help you out with college costs.
Tuition Loan Bill Coming Soon? Here's Some Useful Data on Putting Your College Kid to Work (Infographic).
Image credit: Klaus Vedfelt | Getty Images
Data Scientist,
2 min read
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It's amazing what a damper a college loan bill can put on your holiday sparkle, especially if you're an entrepreneur with debts and bills up the kazoo. The solution (or a partial one)? Put your college kid to work.

Related: This Business Owner Is Paying for His Employees' Kids to Go to College

In this context,'s team of researchers investigated the cities where college students can make the most money over their winter break.

In their study, The Top 20 Cities to Make Bank Over Break, the investigators found Minneapolis, Seattle and Denver to be the top places for college kids to earn cash . . . instead of just hang out on the couch for four weeks. The researchers also broke down multiple cities by college-kid-type jobs, like babysitting, transportation and pet-sitting.

So, what’s the most efficient way for a student to pick up a boatload of cash in a short period of time? The best-paying gigs might surprise you: Pet-sitting and driving, for instance, are, overall, better-earning alternatives to the traditional babysitting gig. But -- here’s the catch -- it all depends on where you live. In Austin, Washington D.C. and San Francisco, your best bet is tutoring.

In Denver and Seattle, meanwhile, you can make more by pet sitting. To figure all this out,'s researchers looked at the U.S. cities that have the highest demand for jobs -- from babysitting, pet-sitting and dog-walking to tutoring, errand-running and senior transportation -- between December 15, 2015, and January 15, 2016. For each of the top 20 cities, they compiled a list of the most lucrative part-time gigs, based on the number of jobs available and the average hourly rate for each job type.

Those hourly paychecks add up: If you’re lucky enough to be headed to Minneapolis -- the city that tops the list as having the most demand for holiday workers -- your young pet-sitter could earn up to $1,451 over break. Your babysitting son or daughter could take home as much as $1,071, meanwhile; but the data shows they'd be better off tutoring ($1,329), dog-walking ($1,314) or errand-running ($1,243).

Here's the overall data for the top 20 cities highlighted in the study. Print it out, stick it on your fridge. Turn your son or daughter into an entrepreneur-in-the-making before that next tuition loan bill arrives.

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