Top 12 Best Jobs For College Students

Here’s a list of the 12 best jobs for college students.



3 years ago | 7 min read

According to a study conducted by Georgetown University’s Center on Education, an estimated 70 percent of college students work while attending school. Of course, maintaining employment during the demanding college years is no easy feat.

Finding a flexible job that pays well enough is important. Luckily, there are many jobs that offer night and weekend hours for students.  

Here’s a list of the 12 best jobs for college students.

1. Tutor Other Students

Average Rate: $24.11 per hour

Take a subject you excel in and help other students improve their grades by becoming a tutor. There are many tutoring opportunities in a college setting, and it's a good choice for part-time work as you can often choose your own hours. If your university has an educational resource center, there may be a formal tutoring position you can apply for. Tutors often set their own schedule and focus on subjects they know the most about.  

When it comes to working as a part-time teacher or tutor, the options are endless.  You can find work by posting ads on your school's Facebook page and other social media. You might also apply for positions with tutoring websites like Wyzant, Chegg Tutors, TakeLessons, Maestro, StudySoup, and Skillshare.

2. Barista

Average Rate: $10.88 per hour

While you might drink coffee to pull an all nighter, working as a barista will really teach you all you need to know about coffee.  You'll probably also be treated to employee discounts that will save you a ton of money on your daily coffee fix. Plus, if you’re able to land a campus job at your college's coffee shop, you’ll meet tons of new college students. In addition to normally being able to schedule your hours out around your class schedule, many baristas reap the benefits of extra income in the form of tips.

3. Host or Server at a Restaurant

 Average Rate: $11.06 per hour

This is the go-to job for those looking to earn fast cash and gain valuable experience in the food industry. Whether your aim is to own a restaurant, work as a chef, or simply pay your way through college, this is the job opportunity for go-getters. 

You’ll be on your feet for most of the shift, but the extra income gained from tips will be a great benefit to your bank account.

Restaurant hosts and hostesses greet diners at the door, lead them to their tables, provide menus, share daily specials and answer questions.They are also responsible for managing table sections and wait lists, and informing servers when a new table has arrived. Restaurants are usually the busiest at nights and on weekends, so this job won’t often interfere with your class schedule. Your, potentially free or discounted, break food  probably also tastes way better than whatever is going on in your school cafeteria.

4. Retail Sales Associate

Average Rate: $11.38 per hour

 According to Business News Daily, the most commonly-held jobs by American college students are sales associate positions. A retail sales associate stocks merchandise, helps maintain display areas, greets customers, answers customer questions and assists them in finding products. They may also be responsible for taking inventory, managing cash registers and recording sales. 

Sales associates enjoy flexibility in terms of scheduling and shift coverage, which can come in handy during particularly stressful school weeks. Additionally, many seasonal sales associate jobs open up during peak holiday months, a plus for students who need to make extra money while on break.

5. Babysitter

Average Rate: $15.27 per hour

Babysitting jobs are popular with college students because they offer plenty of flexibility. Babysitters generally make good money and there are lots of different hours you can work, depending on the age of the kids you babysit. Plus, there's the opportunity to get some of your school work done during downtime.

University employees, including professors and administrative staff, usually favor college students when choosing a babysitter; if you like working with kids, keep your eye out for babysitting positions near your college.

Check with your career office or student employment office or search online for babysitting jobs.

Websites like SitterCity and UrbanSitter make it easy to find nanny and babysitting opportunities near you. You can also try posting a message on NextDoor to offer your babysitting services to local families. is also perfect if you want to work in adult and senior care. The ability to control your work hours and the relatively high pay makes these jobs ideal for college students.

6. Pet Care

 Average Rate: $11.53 per hour

Sites like Rover and Dogvacay offer on-demand employment options that fit with even the most offbeat schedules. And, those who are willing and able to host doggy daycares and overnight pet sits can end up making twice the amount of money as dog walkers. Of course, your income could be even higher if you have experience working with nontraditional pets, such as farm animals, reptiles, and horses.

If you're interested in caring for cats, Holidog offers services for both dogs and cats. This job is well suited for people with limited, inconsistent schedules who need to earn a small amount of extra cash.

7. Gym Receptionist

 Average Rate: $12.40/hour

Gyms open their doors early and shut them late, with many even staying open 24 hours per day, 7 days a week. These hours make for a great scheduling opportunity for college students who might be in school for a traditional 9-5 day. To sweeten the deal, most gyms offer free or deep discounts to employees, which can save you money.

High-energy college students are great fits for these positions. If you hold a personal training certificate you could also apply to be a fitness instructor. These jobs are especially good for those who play collegiate sports, or are majoring in corresponding fields, such as kinesiology, dance, or physical therapy. If you love fitness and can motivate people to exercise, this is the job for you.

You won’t need much experience and will save money here as well. Most places offer their employees free classes - a great way to stay active in college!

8. Lifeguard

Average Rate: $11.39 per hour

If you’re willing to get trained and certified, lifeguarding can be very rewarding. Full-time students in search of a summer job option would benefit from looking into local lifeguarding positions. There are plenty of different employers who take on summer lifeguards, from beaches to hotels to community swim centers, and more. Lifeguarding also tends to be a fun work environment. 

9. Translate

Average Rate:$18-29 hour

Interpreter/translator jobs are great fits for college students who are fully bilingual. Translators typically work exclusively with written text, with many companies and clients offering fully remote options. Interpreters are often required to work in-person at a variety of different venues, including schools, courthouses, and even medical facilities. You can also work as a freelance translator through a platform like Gengo. This is another job that offers a flexible, part-time schedule.

10.Library Monitor

Average Rate: $12.23 per hour

Library jobs are one of the most convenient jobs to have as a student because of their relatively high pay and on-campus location. If you’re worried you won't have enough time to devote to academics, this could be a great job for you. This position will give you plenty of customer service practice and the chance to interact with college students for most of your shift. Best of all, there is usually plenty of time to do your homework. 

Responsibilities generally include the supervision of study spaces to ensure a quiet atmosphere. It's a pretty easy job, but one with lots of downtime - which means you'll have plenty of time to catch up on reading, do homework or study for an exam.

11. Become a Resident Advisor

Average Rate: Varies 

Resident advisors, or RAs, live in the dormitories alongside students and offer support to residents and the university in the form of security and rule enforcement. They also work in a variety of clerical roles that support the management of the living quarters, such as bookkeeping, answering phones, and giving tours.

This isn’t a paid position, but the chance to have free room & board during your college years will save you as much cash as you would make in a traditional part time job. You will get the chance to closely interact, mentor, and bond with hundreds of college students a year and give back to your university in a highly influential way.  Be aware though, in order to become an RA, you must complete a competitive application process and undergo extensive training.

12. Research Assistant

Average Rate: $15.27 per hour

Gain experience in your field of interest by working as a Research Assistant for one of your professors. Research assistants collect and analyze data and prepare materials for researchers. They may also help submit research to granting agencies and foundations, manage project correspondences, and perform administrative tasks for research project leaders. Since the research is usually conducted on campus, these positions are very conveniently located.

Most colleges dedicate a lot of their resources to research. Many departments - from biology to chemistry, physics to engineering, psychology to sociology - recruit paid research assistants. Not all research is in hard science. You may be able to find a job opening doing background research for English, history, psychology, or sociology. 

Check with your school's Psych department to see what research studies are looking for participants. While the positions usually require some background knowledge of the field, if you're majoring in an area that involves research, a research assistant job makes an excellent addition to your resume.

You’ll likely include your college jobs on your resume when applying for opportunities after you graduate. If possible, seek out positions that allow you to build the skills and experience you’ll need in your career. For example, if you’re going to school for fashion merchandising, you may want to consider looking for a job in retail. 

These jobs are all mostly in-person jobs that offer great flexibility for college students but if you're looking to be 100% remote, check out this post! Remember to consider your flexibility limits while looking for a new job. Your classes may be scheduled sporadically with some days starting and ending earlier than others.

It’s important that your job doesn’t interfere with your studies and you are able to schedule out the extra time you need to study or complete homework. That’s why the best jobs for college students are often low-stress roles that do not require you to commit to excessive hours or spend time checking email outside of work.


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