College Advice Blog

Apr 25, 2013

5 Ways to Bring in Extra Cash While in College

Being a full time college student can feel like you’re working overtime on a daily basis, and for most individuals, working a full time job and going to school is way too much to balance. Making ends meet can be difficult without a source of income, and having any spare money left to enjoy your youth with can seem like a faraway dream. If you’re tired of maintaining a diet of ramen noodles, there are ways you can increase your cash flow, and while you’re certainly not going to be able to live a life of luxury anytime soon, you will be able to have a bit of fun and relieve some of the weight of your financial stress.

One Dollar
Donate Plasma
Donating plasma is a great way to bring in some extra cash (about $100-$150 a month depending on the location), and many college students utilize this option on a regular basis. Not only do you get paid for donating your plasma and a few hours of your time, but you’re also contributing to a greater cause; plasma is used to help people fight rare diseases as well as those who are suffering from burns. There are some physical and health requirements you’ll have to meet, but for the most part, it’s a pretty surefire way to get some money in your wallet.

Tutor Your Peers For every subject you love, and everything you’re talented at, there is someone out there who just doesn’t get it, and you can easily benefit off of what comes natural to you. Hang up fliers or advertise on Craigslist that you can help someone finish their chemistry homework or write their English paper, and you might be surprised how many takers you get. With all the stress that comes along with school, people are willing to do anything to take some of the pressure off, and offering your knowledge could prove to be a promising way to score a little cash while helping someone out in the process.

Find a Part Time Job with Flexible Hours
This might sounds like the most obvious piece of advice you could possibly hear, but keep an open mind; many campuses offer jobs designed to work around a student schedule. Check in with the administrative building, ask your guidance counselor, or browse the school’s website to find out what options are available. There are many businesses that would be glad to have someone on board for just a few hours on the weekend as well, so be bold, get out there, and ask. The worst you’re going to hear is no, so you really don’t have much to lose.

Help People with Odd Jobs
If your school schedule is too tight to be able to commit to anything on a regular basis, advertise that you’re available to help with odd jobs. Working parents, elderly folks, and other busy everyday people sometimes need help with keeping up with tasks even if it’s not a regular occurrence. Things such as dog walking, yard work, organizing an attic, and everything in between are common things that need to be done that are easily put on the back burner, and individuals are willing to pay good money to someone willing to help  them catch up with their chores ( remember to always exercise extreme caution when entering a stranger’s home).

Have a Yard Sale
College is a great time to cash in on some of the things you don’t necessarily need anymore because of the simple fact that most students are as broke as you. An old shirt you don’t want anymore might not sell for anything in the real world, but in the college realm there is probably some fellow student who would be more than happy to pay a few dollars for a new piece of clothing. Advertise a yard sale in one of the dorms, or anywhere on campus that will allow you to do so, and by selling old clothes, movies, CDs, and anything else you can part with, you’re bound to improve your current financial state to some degree.

College students are notorious for being broke, and while you might not be able to stray too far from that stigma, there are many opportunities available for you to increase the amount of money coming in so you can indulge in some finer things once in a while. Experiment with these options, enjoy your youth, and keep in mind that one day, even if you have all the money in the world, you’ll look back on ramen feasts and feel a little nostalgic.

About the Author
Arlene Chandler is a freelance writer who loves helping people face the uncertainty of tomorrow. When she’s not taking her dogs into the hills, she writes about career advice and finance tips for the Suncorp life insurance page.


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