There no way around it - college is expensive. Tuition is often the biggest expense, but room and board, furniture, a car, textbooks, and other expenses can make your bill even bigger. If you’re like a lot of other college students, you’ll also want to be able to spend money on food, drinks, clothes, entertainment, and more on a week to week basis. Affording it all can be stressful and even downright impossible, even if you have someone helping you out.
College is a perfect storm that leads too many young adults down a dark path of overspending, credit card debt, and ruined credit scores. Good financial decision making isn’t exactly a hallmark of being in college, but Fizz is looking to change that. With Fizz, you won’t have to worry about overspending because we won’t let you spend more than you have in your connected bank account. There are no fees and no interest rates. Plus, we operate on a daily repayment cycle, so you won’t be able to build up a big balance over the course of the month.
Fizz is here to help. But there’s more you can do to help yourself. If you find yourself needing or just wanting a little extra spending money while you’re in college, you’re not alone. Let’s take a look at a few ways you can make extra money during your college years.
Part-time jobs around campus
Your campus is a bustling economic hotspot, and there are business all over the place that are willing to pay you for your labor. Working an on-campus job doesn’t have to signal the death of your social or academic life either. Lots of businesses offer part time opportunities and great flexibility - just make sure you’re upfront about your needs when taking the job. You can take advantage of the normal channels like online job boards, or you can find resources on campus specifically designed to help students find off-campus jobs.
It’s also a good idea to check with your college or university about jobs that they offer on campus. There’s a wide range of these types of jobs. Some of them pay lots and are more intense, like being a resident-advisor or working as a teaching assistant. Others are more relaxed, like a gig sitting at the library front desk.
Make sure you check the conditions and pay of each of these jobs. While a job like being a resident advisor may seem like it takes a lot of time and energy, you might also gain access to perks such as free housing, which can cut the cost of college by a ton and puts lots of money back in your pocket.
The gig economy
If you have a car or even a bike on campus, getting a job with a food delivery or ridesharing app like Uber or Gopuff could be a good way to go. While these jobs typically pay based on how much you decide to work, they have the added benefit of allowing you to choose your own hours. Can’t sleep one night? Bored on a Friday with nothing going on? Making some deliveries or giving a few rides can help put a solid chunk of change in your pocket.
Federal work-study jobs
If you use financial aid to help you pay for college, a Federal work-study job might be perfect for you. Federal work-study jobs are part-time and help students earn money to pay educational expenses such as tuition, but can also help with room and board, food, travel, entertainment, and more. The best part about Federal work-study jobs is that the program encourages more interesting and rewarding opportunities, such as community service and jobs relevant to your studies.
You’re in college. You’re smart. You’re talented. You have marketable skills, even if you might not think so. On platforms like Fiverr or Upwork, you can sell your services for as much as you want. From writing, to making powerpoints, to designing websites, there are tons of opportunities to get paid. Don’t be shy - making a profile can be the hardest part, but it’s usually free and you might be surprised at how many people reach out to you with opportunities. Freelancing has the added benefit of allowing you to set your own rates and hours.
You might already sell your old clothes online or at thrift stores. So why stop there? If friends or classmates are moving and throwing out old appliances or furniture, it can be a good idea to pick it up and list it online to see if you can turn a profit. Getting set up is pretty easy, too. Sites like Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist will let you list things for free, and then organizing a drop off or delivery is up to you and the buyer.
Internships can be an amazing way to make a solid amount of money in college while gaining relevant, real-world experience and building your résumé. While a lot of internships take place over the summer, there’s a ton of value in saving up money for the coming school year. Plus, there are tons of remote and part-time internships that you can do during the school year as well to sustain that flow of cash into your pocket.
The bottom line
Working while you’re in college to make extra money is a great decision. A little extra cash can help you afford tuition, go out with friends, or save up for bigger purchases - and you don’t have to sacrifice very much if you don’t want to bring in more money. Plus, with a Fizz card, it’s easy to keep track of your spending while you build credit and earn rewards.
Like using your Fizz card, working during college can also help you become more financially responsible. If you have a constant stream of income, budgeting your expenses becomes a whole lot easier. That leaves more space for you to work on building your credit score and learning even more about saving, investing, and personal finance. Plus, you won’t have to rely on outside sources like your parents as much. So don’t wait. If you’re ready to take the next step in your journey towards financial independence, getting a job in college should be your next priority - after downloading the Fizz app to get your very own card, of course!
Sam is a Kenyon College alum and is head of content at Fizz. He's been a go to personal finance resource among his peers since getting his first credit card during his sophomore year of college. He hails from Washington, DC, loves all things aviation, and currently lives in Los Angeles.