20 High-Paying Jobs for College Students

Christina J Colclough

By Christina Colclough

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Let’s be real; many college kids are flat-broke. Tuition, books, housing – it all adds up fast. But we all want a job that pays well for the hours worked. Otherwise, what’s the point of sacrificing your precious free time?

Jobs for College Students

That’s why I’m here to clue you in on some good-paying jobs for college students like you. Keep reading to learn about opportunities that’ll keep your pockets lined during these college years.

20 Good Jobs For College Students That Pay Well

On-Campus Jobs for College Students

On-campus jobs can be a great way to earn some cash while staying on top of your studies.

For starters, they are incredibly convenient. You can finish your class, grab a meal, and head straight to your job without leaving campus. This cuts down on travel costs and saves time.

Many good-paying jobs often come with flexible hours, which is perfect for busy students. Being on campus means you can easily fit work around your classes and other commitments. Plus, you’ll be working in a familiar environment.

1. Tutor

Tutor job

Average Hourly Wage: $19/h

Tutoring is a classic job in college, and for good reason. You get to help other students out with their classes. It’s a solid way to make cash and sharpen your skills.

Most tutoring roles are flexible. They can fit around your courses and often pay quite well compared to other part-time jobs.

You need a good grasp of the subject and some patience, as everyone learns at their own pace. This job not only pads your wallet but also boosts your resume with valuable skills like communication and leadership.

2. Department Assistant

Average Hourly Wage: $21/h

You can consider lending a hand in your department’s office. You could answer phones, handle paperwork, or help with events. It might not sound super exciting, but it’s a chance to get to know your professors and learn more about your field.

This job is also a smart choice for building strong relationships with your professors and other faculty, which can be incredibly beneficial later on.

3. Campus Tour Guide

Average Hourly Wage: $19/h

You’d mainly show prospective students and their families around and share information about your college. It’s a chill way to earn cash by just walking around and chatting.

Being a tour guide lets you polish your public speaking skills in a fairly low-pressure setting. You also get to represent your school to new folks who might end up enrolling – a nice perk if you dig the college vibe.

Just beware that you’ll probably have to memorize quite a few campus facts and figures to be able to field any random questions.

4. Library Assistant

Library Assistant job

Average Hourly Wage: $17/h

If you prefer a quieter vibe, have a look at this job. You’ll help people find books, keep things organized, and maybe even shelve some dusty old volumes. This one’s perfect if you enjoy the academic atmosphere and don’t mind a little peace.

The cool thing about this role is you’ll be in the library daily – prime real estate for knocking out readings or getting work done between tasks. The flexible working hours can work nicely with busy schedules, too.

5. Resident Assistant

Average Hourly Wage: $16/h

It’s a pretty common on-campus job. You help run the dorms and look after your fellow students living there. You’d be the go-to person for any issues, questions, or conflicts.

It’s a great gig if you enjoy being involved in campus life and making a difference in other students’ lives. Perhaps you also get free room and board – a sweet deal that saves you a ton of cash. Keep in mind that being an RA can be demanding and needs good people skills.

6. Off-Campus Jobs for College Students

These gigs can be a great way to meet new people outside the campus bubble. You’re not limited to what the college offers and might find something that suits your interests or schedule better.

Venturing off-campus can give you a taste of the “real world” work environment. Keep in mind, though, that juggling work and studies can be challenging. Good time management is super important here.

7. Restaurant Server

Restaurant Server student

Average Hourly Wage: $14/h

It can be pretty demanding, but this job teaches you a lot about customer service skills and working under pressure. You’re constantly on your feet, dealing with orders, and making sure customers are happy.

The good thing is that you can walk away with tips on top of your average hourly wage, which can add up. Don’t underestimate the stamina and people skills needed for these part-time jobs for students, though. It can get pretty hectic on busy nights.

8. Barista

Average Hourly Wage: $16/h

Being a barista at coffee shops might be a good fit if you love coffee and a fast-paced environment. You’ll learn about different coffee types, brewing methods, and even latte art!

It’s a social job for college students where you get to chat with regulars and meet new people every day. Remember, the barista position requires attention to detail and multitasking, especially during rush hour!

9. Cashier

Work at McDonald’s

Average Hourly Wage: $13/h

You’d be ringing up sales, handling money, and maybe even bagging things. It might sound simple, but it helps you learn to deal with all sorts of people, sometimes under pressure, which is a useful life skill, don’t you think?

What’s good about being a cashier is its flexibility. Stores often need people at different times, so you can often work around your academic schedule. And hey, sometimes you might even snag a discount on stuff.

10. Rideshare Driver

Average Hourly Wage: $21/h

If you’ve got a car and enjoy driving, this is one of the best jobs for college students with no experience. Platforms like Uber or Lyft let you set your hours, pick up passengers, and get paid to drive them around. You’re your own boss in a way; there is no dress code or set schedule.

But before diving in, make sure you understand the costs involved. Gas, car maintenance, and insurance all add up. You also need to be comfortable with the idea of driving strangers around and dealing with traffic.

11. Delivery Service Driver

Average Hourly Wage: $18/h

Like being an Uber driver, this is a pretty sweet option for students. You get to drive around and make deliveries on your own time. No boss breathing down your neck – just pick up the orders and drop them off. It’s flexible work that can adapt to your classes.

The money’s not bad either, especially if you get tips. You’ll make decent cash working just a few extra hours per day or night.

12. Pet Sitter

Average Hourly Wage: $16/h

You get paid to hang out with animals – what’s not to love? Many people need someone to check in on their furry friends while at work or out of town.

It’s a sweet setup for students since the hours are flexible. You can pick up pet-sitting jobs here and there between classes. Just be ready to follow the owners’ instructions and genuinely love animals. These folks are trusting you with their beloved companions, after all.

13. Babysitter


Average Hourly Wage: $18/h

This side hustle can be a great fit if you’re good with kids. You can usually set your own hours (evenings and weekends are common), making it easy to work around your classes.

The hours tend to work well for students. You can snag babysitting jobs after class, on weekends, or over breaks.

However, looking after kids is no joke. You’ll need patience, creativity to keep them engaged, and the ability to apply gentle discipline when necessary.

14. Camp Counselor

Average Hourly Wage: $15/h

A camp counselor gets to work with kids at summer camps or after-school programs. Their main job is to plan activities, lead games and events, and basically keep the little ones engaged and having fun.

It’s a pretty hands-on gig involving being on your feet a lot. But it can be super rewarding if you genuinely enjoy being around kids and have tons of energy and patience. Just remember, you’ll be responsible for a group’s safety and well-being.

15. Sales Associate

Average Hourly Wage: $18/h

This one’s a classic. Working retail might not sound glamorous, but it can be a good way to earn extra cash and build real-world skills.

You’ll learn how to deal with all sorts of people – from friendly faces to not-so-friendly ones. Dealing with customers can sharpen communication, problem-solving, and social skills, which, believe it or not, look good on a resume.

16. Remote Jobs for College Students

Woman working remotely

Remote jobs have been a popular choice for students and others after the pandemic. They bring an awesome opportunity for college students. You earn money while still being able to focus on your studies. No more worrying about rigid schedules or commuting. You can work whenever and wherever suits you best.

That doesn’t mean no pressure or responsibility is coming with these good-paying jobs. Be ready to hold yourself accountable without a manager looking over your shoulder.

17. Freelance Writer

write email

Average Hourly Wage: $23/h

If you’ve got a knack for writing, freelancing could be right up your alley. You’ll take on various writing jobs for clients, from blog posts and articles to marketing copy and ghostwriting entire books.

Flexibility is a big perk. You can take on as much or as little work as your schedule allows. Writing jobs are also pretty easy to find online through freelance marketplaces. Just be ready to build a portfolio and land those first few clients.

18. Graphic Designer

Graphic Designer

Average Hourly Wage: $27/h

Many businesses need help with their visuals, making it a pretty sweet gig for a student. If you’ve got an eye for design, it’s an artistic and lucrative side hustle.

You get to build up your portfolio with real projects. This is also the chance for you to learn a bunch about deadlines and dealing with clients – stuff that’ll be handy later. An online portfolio showcasing your best work is the best way to land these jobs.

19. Data Entry

Data Analyst

Average Hourly Wage: $19/h

For starters, data entry is just what it sounds like – typing information into a computer system or database. It’s a solid remote gig for students since the work is pretty straightforward. All you need are exceptional typing skills and the ability to pay close attention to detail.

It might not sound super thrilling, but it’s reliable work you can often do from your dorm room on your own time. Make sure you can handle potentially dry material and stay organized without hammering accuracy.

20. Virtual Assistant

Virtual Assistant

Average Hourly Wage: $24/h

Working as a virtual assistant, or VA for short, puts you in more of an administrative support role. Your duties could involve scheduling appointments, making travel arrangements, or handling someone’s emails and calls when unavailable.

You might find a VA job through a company or work for an individual as an independent contractor. Either way, solid communication and organizational skills are a must.

21. Social Media Manager

social media vlogger

Average Hourly Wage: $31/h

If you practically live on TikTok or Instagram, why not get paid for your social media savvy? Don’t let the title throw you. This doesn’t necessarily require years of marketing experience or expertise.

For students, it’s more about helping businesses stay active and engaged on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, you name it. Your day-to-day could involve creating posts, replying to comments and messages, or even lurking on different accounts to keep tabs on trends.

22. Translator

Average Hourly Wage: $28/h

Translation gigs can be a nice little side hustle if you know multiple languages. Lots of companies need help translating documents, websites, apps, and other materials into different languages. It’s flexible work you can do remotely whenever you have free time.

You don’t necessarily need a college degree or tons of professional experience to get started, either. Try volunteering your translation skills at local places first to gain some experience. That’ll make it easier to land paid translation jobs down the line.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are There Any Other Ways to Make Money While in College?

You could sign up for online surveys or participate in research studies run by your university. It’s easy money for not much effort. Don’t forget about scholarships, too.

Is It Possible to Work a Full-Time Job While In College?

It’s possible, but it’s certainly not a cakewalk. You’ll be stretched thin, with little time for anything else. Your social life and grades could take a hit.

Which is Better, Internships or Part-Time Jobs?

It depends on your situation and goals. Internships are great for gaining relevant experience in your field, but the pay is usually terrible if you get paid at all.

However, internships can sometimes lead to jobs after graduation, so they have that going for them. The best high-paying jobs for college students, on the other hand, bring in steady cash but may not directly relate to your major.


At the end of the day, a little income can go a long way towards reducing that struggle. These jobs for college students can also be an investment in your long-term success, not just a regular paycheck. So spend some time exploring your best options!

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Christina J Colclough

Christina J. Colclough

Dr Christina J. Colclough is an expert on The Future World of Work and the politics of digital technology advocating globally for the importance of the workers’ voice. She has extensive regional and global labour movement experience, is a sought-after keynote speaker, coach, and strategist advising progressive governments and worker organisations.

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