The Top 3 Best Online Jobs For College Students

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Brian Roberts

August 10, 2020  •  5 min read

Higher education costs continues to rise, making online jobs for college students more essential than ever.

College costs have gone up by 10% over the last ten years, according to a College Board report.

Although many students receive funding from their families, this is no longer sufficient either. But it gets worse.

Did you know 36% of college students don’t even have enough money to eat?

The survey had 43,000 respondents from 66 public and private schools, and a mix of both two-year and four-year universities.

This all according to a ground-breaking study by Temple University and the Wisconsin HOPE Lab. It’s hard to fathom, but true.

Now your circumstances may not be that dire as a college student, but the fact remains: education isn’t getting any cheaper, and the only person you can rely on to help you pay for it–or pay it back–is you.

Which is why we’ve put together this list of the best online jobs for college students.

Online Jobs For College Students

Offline jobs are great, but online jobs have serious benefits all college students should consider.

Like better wages and the ability to set your own schedule.

Both of which are essential for students. What follows is a list of our top job picks for students. These will allow you to maximize your income and time in tandem.

Freelance Writing

If there’s one thing college students do a lot of, it’s write. At a certain point, writing becomes as natural as breathing when you’re in school.

Don’t take this skill for granted. Writing is one of the most valued skills, in high demand across virtually all industries.

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The demand for technical writers is expected to grow 10% by 2024. 

This is faster than the average for all occupations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Regardless of your major, if you can write about it, you can find someone out who in it willing to pay you for it.

Writing is so much more than news stories, blogs (like this one) or, well, really any of the industries writing is commonly associated with.

As a bonus, getting into writing as a freelancer is a great way to prove you’re a self-starter, while also networking and adding valuable experience to your resume.

online jobs for college students

Don’t beat yourself up over lack of credentials.

As a freelance journalist, I’ve had my writing featured in The Washington Post and dozens of other major media, and as a writing agency owner, I’ve worked with Fortune 100 companies, celebrities and many others.

And not once has someone asked about my “credentials.”  

As a freelancer, people are far more concerned with the quality of your work and how reliable you are. So focus on those first. Credentials will follow.

How much do online writers make?

As far as online jobs for college students go, writers can make good money.

The top 25% of freelance writers can earn $.83 or more per word, while the middle earn roughly $.25 per word and the bottom middle earn at $.12 per word. The bottom is $.03 per word.

RELATED: Become a freelance writer

Online jobs for college students traditionally are hard to come by. The beauty of freelance writing is that it allows you to make your own.

But I think you should ditch that model entirely. You’d be much better served charging by the project based on your time, experience and the value you’re finished project will bring to your client. And always give options!

Where can I find online writing jobs?

Start by reaching out to businesses you frequent. Local restaurants, stores, coffee shops, wherever you go most. Let them know how you’d be happy to handle any writing needs they have, should they arise.

money making appsTalk to people you see often at places you frequent, so it doesn’t feel like selling. 

If you’d rather go the traditional route, that’s fine too. Just don’t try to make yourself seem bigger than you are, because in these spaces you’ll feel like you’re in competition.

Your only competition should be who you were yesterday. That’s the only way you get better (and stay sane!).

Many employers are actually happier working with college students–they don’t have a know-it-all mentality (yet!)

Upload your student writing resume to ZipRecruiter.

Highlight your major and include links or attach copies of your best writing assignments.

Grades alone might not be a strong enough motivator to put pen to paper, but a nice paycheck might.

It’s the first place I visited when I had to hire writers for my company, and I’ll return once it’s time to hire again.

Online jobs for college students aren’t as few and far between as you think. You just have to go the right places, that’s all. ZipRecruiter isn’t like the others.

While other resume websites are the equivalent of throwing your resume into a black hole, ZipRecruiter is different.

online jobs for college students

Sell Your Textbooks

The cost of college textbooks has risen by 87.5% according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Factor in room, board, tuition and a decent meal (36% of students don’t–so that’s not me being “tongue in cheek“) and that’s a lot of money spent.

Resourcefulness is a must, and the best place to start is by selling textbooks you no longer use. Even older additions can fetch you decent cash, so don’t put it off.

If you don’t have a friend who needs it, sell it.

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Read our list of the top 5 best places to sell textbooks.

To spare you a click though, these are the sites we listed.

  1. BookScout
  2. BookFinder
  3. Chegg
  4. TextbookRush 
  5.  Amazon

Get quotes from them all and go with the best offer.

Many will foot the bill for your shipping costs too, so there’s no reason to put it off.

online jobs for college students

Share Your Opinion

While freelance writing can be lucrative and rewarding, it may take you time some time to get into.

If freelance writing is the ideal long term role in the world of online jobs for college students, surveys are a great short-term bet.

Online survey sites won’t make you rich. But they will make you some extra cash quick. And as a college student, that’s the name of the game.

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Not sure about a site? Run it through the BBB Scam Tracker.

To save you time–college students have that in short supply–we’ve done the vetting for you.

Each of these 3 sites are 100% legit online jobs for college students.

You make money by doing simple tasks, from testing products to taking surveys. Another bonus?

Each of these sites is offering a $5 sign up bonus, too. So get on it:

  1. InboxDollars
  2. Survey Junkie
  3. Swagbucks

You’ve got enough on your plate.

And the good news is, these sites don’t require much effort.

You can make money online with them easily, all while doing other (more important) tasks…

Like studying!