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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Here are some low-barrier ways for those still in school to make money on the side.
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Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Making money while you’re a student won’t just help pay your bills -- it can expand your college experience. It turns out nearly 80 percent of college students work at least part-time, meaning most students need options that can help them buy books and build resumes while keeping up with their studies. That’s why culled this slideshow of ways for college students to earn money while in school, keeping in mind their busy academic lives and lack of startup capital.

Check out the next 22 slides.

Related: 9 Low-Cost Business Ideas for College Students

22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

IT support

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There is never enough IT support on college campuses. If you’re someone who knows what to do when a computer crashes, won’t print or how to troubleshoot, then working as IT support can be a lucrative way to make money on the side.

On campus, you can put the word out using old fashioned flyers, business cards or spread the word on listservs and campus job boards. You can establish regular “office hours” at the campus center or library where, for a flat or hourly fee, students can come to you for help. The pay range varies, depending on your location and the industry you serve, however IT work can start at $15.81 an hour.

Related: 9 Million-Dollar Ideas You Can Launch From Your Dorm Room

22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Brand ambassador

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You know those young, good-looking outgoing people you see around campus (or on the street) handing out free stuff, like snack chips or energy drinks? Those people are brand ambassadors, and they’re paid by companies to hand out free stuff at parties, events, on campus or around town in order to promote the brand and certain products. Sometimes, the work involves sales -- and it’s flexible and part-time. Often, this work can start at $16.44 an hour.

Related: How to Start a Side Hustle Without Quitting Your Day Job

22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Cleaning services

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Cleaning jobs on and off campus in homes can work around your class schedule, and the startup costs are low, especially if you request the client provide the cleaning solutions and equipment. You bring the sweat, some old rags and a spray bottle of diluted vinegar -- a green cleaning solution -- and make sure that you overestimate the time you think it’ll take to finish the job (it typically takes longer than you think). Map out how many rooms there are and the cleaning expectations with your client ahead of time. Because you’ll be working in someone’s home, this job is trust-based. When you do good work, the referrals will come. On average, you can charge $20-$40 an hour, depending on your location.

You can start marketing yourself and building a client list by creating profiles on home services marketplaces, such as Handy Pro, All Set, Zaarly, Thumbtack and TaskRabbit. Once you take a look into the offerings and requirements for each site, you’ll see they tend to differ. For instance, Handy Pro requires a year of paid experience in the services you’re marketing, and All Set is only currently active in the San Francisco Bay and Boston areas.

Related: 15 Ways to Make Quick Cash on the Side

22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side


Chris Ryan | Getty Images

Whether you help students move or locals in the area, you can make up to $200 per move, plus tips. However, the pay largely depends on location. 


One question tho - It says movers can make between $75 up to $200 per move, dependent on your location and the company. The work isn't for everyone. It’s physically hard work that involves lifting heavy materials, so you need to be in shape. But, it’s a flexible job, and the pay is good, so you can join a moving business, or start your own, marketing through word-of-mouth, social media, online ads, flyers and a website.

There a few ways to go about marketing your moving services. By creating a profile on on chore services website Taskrabbit, you can advertise your services and build your online rating footprint. You can also join a student moving service, like Bellhops (jobs pay between $75-$100 per job, according to Alex Elsea, head of growth at Bellhops) and Dolly. Both companies provide a lot of autonomy over your schedule and start at $15 an hour for moving. If you own a van or truck, that rate can go up to $30 an hour, according to Dolly.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Social media assistant

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College students are in the prime of their social-media lives and know all the latest tools. Use this to your advantage and become a social media assistant. The responsibilities may require some strategy and auditing, but for the most part, the job is scheduling “social media posts on platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for brands and companies, using tools like Hootsuite and TweetDeck,” according to Monster. The pay (and title) for this work varies, depending on location and industry, and can start at $14 an hour, depending on experience and savvy. In your search, look for job titles that cover similar work, such as “marketing assistant” and “social media coordinator.”  

To get started, contact your on-campus Marketing and Career Services departments, both of which often receive requests and job posts from businesses that seek smart and tech-savvy students for part-time work.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side


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A lot of places need articulate and determined young people to make calls to sell products, conducts surveys and solicit donations -- starting with your school’s alumni office. Check there first. The work hours are usually in the evening, when you’re out of class and folks are home from work. Telemarketers can make, on average, $16.08 per hour.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Security guard

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Working as a part-time security guard means you could be a bouncer at a local bar or serve as security at businesses or events. Either way, you can schedule it around your classes and can make an average of $15.49 per hour.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Personal fitness trainer

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If you’re already in shape and regularly work out, why not provide coaching and training for others who could use a fitness trainer? You don’t need to be certified as a personal trainer in order to offer services, however should a client get injured, certification demonstrates expertise and can offer protection in the case of being sued. Also, if you’re affiliated with a gym, certification is often required. You can find out more about certification through the National Academy of Sports Medicine or the American Council on Exercise. The average hourly salary for a part-time personal trainer is $18.95.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side


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We all have academic strengths, so find out what your subject strength is and use it to tutor, either fellow students or grade school students in your area. If you scored high on the SAT, that’s another plum opportunity to tutor high school students. The pay range for tutoring varies according to where you live and subject. Tutors for SAT and test preparation can charge more. However, you can start at $18 per hour.

Learn more about how to make money tutoring in college.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Virtual assistant

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A virtual assistant is a good job for a college student, who can work in freelancing around his or her course schedule. A virtual assistant has a broad range of responsibilities that are largely administrative and can include booking travel, organizing, word processing, taking or transcribing notes, maintaining calendars, formatting blog posts, reading and researching and more. The median salary for this position is $15.57 an hour.

To position yourself for this line of work, highlight any sort of administrative experience you’ve had at internships or jobs, which can testify to your abilities for this job that requires resourcefulness, time management and basic office work skills.

Kick off your job search by looking for “virtual assistant” on freelance job sites, such as Upwork,, ZipRecruiter and

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Uber or Lyft driver


If you have a car and a state-issued driver’s license with a clean driving record, and have been driving for at least one consecutive year, then you may be eligible to start making money as a driver for Uber or Lyft, although these companies have certain restrictions, such as Uber requires its drivers to be be 21 and older and to own 4-door vehicles. In addition, some states may require special licenses to function as a commercial driver.

The upsides are you can make your own hours and will learn the hottest spots in your town in the process, however the profits for rideshare drivers vary according to states, and you need to take into account costs such as wear and tear, gas and insurance, as well as, the commission charged for each ride. According to financial analytics site SherpaShare, New York drivers on average earn the most (Uber X $20.54; Lyft $20.03) while drivers in cities, like Baltimore (Uber X $9.77; Lyft $7.59) and Nashville (Uber X $8.11; Lyft $8.36) earn at the bottom of the payscale. (These are net earnings after expenses, including commissions.)

Earnings for cities (other than New York) generally range from about $8.80 – $11 an hour, not subtracting commissions.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side


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If you already have experience in childcare (or have younger siblings at home), this might be a good way for you to earn cash. Babysitters work generally on nights and weekends, or you could look for a part-time job at a daycare center.

The hourly wage for babysitting and nanny services vary, depending on the geographical location. The average babysitting rate in 2016 was $13.97 per hour, according to the 2017 Babysitter Survey. However, you can determine what to charge using a tool that accounts for the average rate in your area.  

To market yourself, start by creating a profile on a caregiver marketplace, such as or

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Animal caretaker

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Whether you want to dog walk, groom, feed or pet sit, this is a highly flexible way to make money on the side. Loving animals and being comfortable around them is a prerequisite for the job, and animal caretakers earn, on average, $13.79 per hour.

To market yourself, you can post flyers with your information at local pet stores and  animal hospitals, and there are plenty of petcare job marketplaces where you can create your profile, such as,,, and (which offers a range of care services, including senior care and childcare).

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Event promoter

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If you are a social person who goes to a lot of parties, clubs and musical and sporting events and enjoy connecting with people, why not use this to your advantage? Local venues and businesses need event promoters to get the word out on their events, and there’s no better place to do it than on college campuses.

While this position has been traditionally a boots-on-the-ground sort of gig -- handing out flyers and putting signs in visible and high-traffic areas -- social media and technology has made the job more digital. Likely, you’ll be expected to promote events using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others social sites to reach college students. Hourly pay starts at $12.75.  

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Resume writer

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All college students need a good resume at some point to land an internship or job, but not all college students understand how to create one and how to best organize their information. You can use the campus career center to research what a strong resume looks like and must include, and also research online for templates and tips on language and keywords.

As a college student catering to other students, start off by keeping your hourly rate fairly low ($15-$20).

To get started on how to write a great resume, check out these articles:

Related: 7 Realistic Ways to Make Money Online

22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Restaurant server

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By working shifts in the restaurant industry, you can accommodate your class schedule while earning an hourly wage with an extremely low base pay and tips that fluctuate. The median base pay in the U.S. starts at $5.20 an hour, plus tips that range from $1.01 to $16.32 an hour, depending on where you work and live. The job isn’t easy. You’re not just taking orders, but you’re carrying heavy trays, clearing tables and, sometimes, working late closing a restaurant. However, you’re also learning people skills and can score free meals and discounted food.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Delivery person

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Every college town or city needs delivery people. You can work for food-delivery services, such as Postmates or Seamless, or you can deliver for local food-delivery businesses. The average delivery person can make $13.40 an hour, plus tips.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Data entry clerk

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Many data entry jobs can be ideal for college students, because they can be done part-time and from home, and they also don’t require specialized skills, other than accurate and fast (70 WPM) typing skills as well as basic computer skills. The average pay for a data entry clerk in the U.S. is $12.55 an hour.

You can get build your freelancing work by creating profiles on freelancer job sites such as, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Upwork, The Smart Crowd, Fiverr, Clickworker and Microworkers.

These gig jobs don’t pay very well, so if you’re looking for more ongoing part-time data-entry work, you can go to more general job sites, like, or, and type in “data entry” as your keyword.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side


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College students who were brought up on computers certainly know how to type quickly, a necessary skill for a remote transcriptionist. Equipment-wise, you’ll need headphones, a computer or laptop and word processing software. The wage varies across industries, but to get an idea, a medical transcriptionist’s average hourly wage is $15.29.

To get started, you can do a search of “transcription” or “transcriber” on job sites, such as Glassdoor. Or you can register as a freelance transcriber on job marketplace sites, such as TranscribeMe, Go Transcript and UpWork.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side

Bank teller

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Bank tellers work shifts, so this job could work for college students who are accurate when it comes to counting money and handling important financial transactions. Also, the job requires interacting with customers, so it’s important to enjoy this aspect of the job. The average part-time bank teller makes $12.44 per hour.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side


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Working at a coffee shop, whether it’s a local cafe or a national chain like Starbucks, seems like a natural fit for a college student. The hours are in shifts, and the barista takes orders, makes coffee drinks, sometimes handles money and cleans up, all while dealing with customers. While it’s not a high-paying jobs, it averages at $10.98 per hour, you do get tips.

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22 Ways for College Students to Make Money on the Side


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Bartending is a pretty high skill job -- you need to be able to take multiple orders, mix drinks and often serve as a street therapist. You typically have to be 21 or older to bartend, and know how to make cocktails.

The shifts are generally in the evening, when classes are over, but they can run late. Bartenders typically make $6.60 per hour -- it’s the tips that make up for the low wage. The upside is that this is the sort of job where you can meet tons of people, hear fascinating stories and make wonderful connections.

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