Guest post by Erica the Intern
College is one of the coolest, most unique experiences in a person’s life. You live in a small community where basically everyone is your age, your beliefs and thought processes are challenged regularly, and you learn to become very resourceful. You can make Sunday’s pasta dish last until Thursday, you are not ashamed to buy store-brand everything, and drinking the cheapest beer is fine by you.
One of the biggest challenges during college is finding flexible jobs and figuring out how to earn money. Working in fast food restaurants or having a campus job are fine, but the paychecks aren’t huge. Below are some unique ways I’ve found to fund a modest college lifestyle that pay more than minimum wage:
- Freelance work: You’re in college and you’re learning new skills each year. What better way to build your resume and develop those skills than entering the freelance world? With freelance work, you can take on as much or as little work as you want. It’s a good idea to look up the average pricing for various types of freelance work and figure out how much your clients can pay you.
- Promotions: When the Super Bowl came to Indianapolis, I was introduced to promotional staffing. As promotional staff, you work on an event-by-event basis. The types of jobs range from being a brand ambassador, product demonstrator, event staff, costume character, bartender, emcee and more. Generally, the pay is significantly above minimum wage and may include additional earning potential through tips. I personally worked with Victory Marketing Agency, but there tons of promotional staffing agencies across the country.
- Sell plasma: Selling plasma is one of the easiest ways to earn extra cash because you literally just have to sit in a chair and let the nurses do their thing. Is it the most pleasant experience? No, but it will pay for your groceries. You can make up to $200 per month in Indiana selling plasma.
- Sell T-Shirts: You know what college students love? Unique t-shirts. T-shirts are easy to design, don’t have to be complicated and are fun to make. Design t-shirts that are school/town specific or that are witty and clever. Check out one of my favorite articles from Fuel Your Creativity: Starting a T-Shirt Line with No Money.
- Bartend: If you’re 21 and want to learn how to sling booze like a pro, try your hand at bartending. Sure, you’ll give up your weekends and have to deal with crazy people, but it can be really fun and the earning potential is much higher than waiting tables.
These are just a few unique ways I’ve found to make money (and avoid student loans!) while in college. Get creative, play up your skills, find something you enjoy doing and turn it into a profit.