Paying for your education can be extremely stressful. Today, the cost of higher education forces students to take out large numbers of loans, and even those who get scholarships may still need to borrow money. But trying to work by going to class, studying, writing articles, and working a job, even part-time, can be extremely stressful. Fortunately, there are creative ways to pay for college that don’t involve long hours of work.
Get a work-study job on campus
Most colleges and universities have a work study program for interested students. These students must apply and be hired, just like a real job. However, all of the work is on campus, and you are free to study if you don’t have any work to do. This means you can get paid and do your homework at the same time.
These jobs typically include things like tidying up books in the library, tutoring other students in the writing center, or collecting and sorting mail for various departments. While these jobs typically pay only minimum wage, they do have other benefits. You don’t have to spend time commuting to work, and it’s much easier to request time off for college events.
Work as a freelance writer
Did you know that you can get freelance work before you finish your degree? There are many freelance websites that people post job offers on. If you have the skills to carry out these jobs, you can bid on them. These jobs cover everything from graphic design to writing / editing, coding and website design. Entrepreneurs often just want to see that you can do the job instead of knowing what degrees you have, so you may not have graduated.
The great thing about being a freelancer is that you are your own boss. You can decide how much work you want to do, and as a contractor you usually only work on the project you were hired for. This means that when the job is done, you are free to move on to another job or take a break. In some cases, you may even find a few clients who enjoy your job and want to hire you again. It’s even possible that a client could hire you full-time after you graduate (or even before if you can handle it).
Ask for help
While you may want to be independent and cover the cost of your education yourself, this may not be possible without being very stressed. If you are participating in a very intense program, you may not have time to work. It is perfectly okay to ask your parents for help if you need it, especially if they have offered it to you. There are specific university loans for parents that offer competitive interest rates.
If your parents own their home and have good equity, they might also consider a reverse mortgage. This option allows them to borrow against the value of their home. According to experts from All reverse mortgages, “Reverse mortgages are a great option for those who have built up equity in their home and don’t want to shoulder the monthly payments associated with a traditional loan.”
Your parents will only have to repay this amount if they move out, sell the house, or die. There is no monthly payment to be made and they can access the money immediately. This can be the ideal solution for pay for college.
Apps like Uber Eats, Grub Hub, and Door Dash have become very popular, and these are all great opportunities for students because they allow you to set your own hours. Some of these jobs involve picking up food that people have ordered and delivering it to them. Others are actually more personal shopping jobs. You would go to the store and purchase the items requested. The customer pays for everything you buy plus a flat fee for your services. They may even tip you extra if you do a great job.
Make a bet
It may not be the most stable income option, but you can donate online gambling and slot machines since. If you love the game and are good at it, you can make a lot of money at these games. You can participate in online poker tournaments, for example. Some of these tournaments pay a really big amount if you win it all. You have to be careful not to lose too much money, but if you are good at gambling and don’t outdo yourself financially, you can pay your tuition this way.
Become a paid tutor
Tutoring can be a very lucrative business. You also have several options here. You can teach other students who need extra help, or you can teach younger students. There are also online tutoring services that you can join that will connect you with students from across the country or even around the world. You are free to tutor only in what you specialize in, or you can branch out and offer help in any subject you think you understand well enough. Tutoring can even help you with your studies as it strengthens the basics.
Look for weird scholarships
Although you probably applied for everything and each purse your college has offered and a number of others, there are some very weird and weirdly specific scholarships that you might be eligible for. By spending some time online, you can find some of these unique opportunities. For example, there are scholarships for left-handed people and for members of the LGBTQ + community. There are even unique contests that award scholarships, such as the Google Doodle Contest and the “Best Duck Ribbon Prom Outfit” contest. There’s even a purse for Star Trek fans and one for grown-ups!
If you play in your college orchestra or know how to play an instrument, you may be able to book concerts in your spare time. Many students need accompanists to play with them at recitals or to practice. Many couples who get married want live music at their ceremony or reception. You can even find a local restaurant or other business looking to hire someone to play for several hours each night. You can even take your music to the streets and play in the park or elsewhere for tips.
Sell your own artwork
There are many opportunities for a skilled artist to make money if you know where to look for them. It’s true that a lot of people can’t or don’t want to pay for a large original piece, but a lot of people are willing to drop a small amount on an art print. Others are interested in the illustrations of their favorite characters or even the original characters they created.
Paying for a booth at a local comic book convention can be very lucrative. You want to make sure you understand copyright law if you’re going to sell prints of popular characters, but that’s okay if you’re placing orders at the convention. People are often willing to sit for 15-20 minutes while you sketch them in costume. You can even create and sell your own comics or prints of unique characters that you have created. Selling your prints online is also an option and can generate income between these shows.
Sell other items online
If you sew, crochet, or do any other craft, you can start selling them online and at local craft fairs. Unique, handmade items can be very profitable, and selling them allows you to cover the costs of your hobby while earning money to pay for school. Yes, you need to set aside time to work specifically on your articles, but you can do it whenever you have the time. You are not on anyone’s calendar.
Another way to make money is to resell items. Real estate sales and garage sales are often treasures for those who know what to look for. With a little time, you can learn to identify the items that you can resell for a good amount of money. If you are attending an auction, you might even be able to buy boxes of items for a dollar that you can resell for a lot more.
Also, don’t forget to resell your textbooks. While your college bookstore may buy them back, they often do so for next to nothing. Selling them online or advertising them at half the bookstore price to other students will get you a better return on your investment. University textbooks can be very expensive, so be sure to take advantage of that when purchasing your own books as well. Look for great deals online, in second-hand bookstores and on social media. Saving money is just as much important like earning money.
These are just a few of the unique and creative ways to pay for your college education. By looking at your situation, the needs of those around you, and taking an inventory of your skills, you may find that you can fill a niche and make money at the same time.