The 5 Best College Student Jobs

With today’s skyrocketing cost of college, more and more families are looking for students to help out with the cost of attending school.

However, not all jobs are created equal. Below, I take a look at the five best ones to score as a contributing student.


The 5 Best College Student Jobs

1. Work Study

While not usually the highest salary, work study positions have plenty of side benefits that make them amongst the most valuable jobs.

For one thing, they may very well come attached to your financial aid package; it can sometimes be difficult to tell exactly where your grants end and your salary begins.

Secondly, work study positions often pay much higher wages than similar positions would. You are often doing minimum-wage labor for a much higher check. Nothing wrong with grabbing a little extra value.

But, perhaps most importantly, work study jobs are just what they sound like – positions with enough down time that there are plenty of chances to study.

That’s valuable in innumerable ways – whether it helps you buckle down with your work while away from friends, or gives you spare time elsewhere to hold another job, or participate in extracurriculars… there’s little doubt that work study jobs bring wealth well beyond the size of a paycheck.

2. Paid Per Project

These positions are similar to work study, in that you can often get paid for time spent studying. In pay-per-project jobs, it doesn’t matter how long it takes you, just so long as your assignment gets done.

Will You Get a Fair Financial Aid Offer?

3. Dorm Aid

This is a new business, started at Harvard in 2004… and they’re looking to aggressively expand to other college campuses.

Here’s how it works. Dorm Aid helps students with various dorm-related activities – from laundry to cleaning – for, of course, a fee.

Should you decide to open up your local chapter, not only are you learning valuable skill sets – from entrepreneurial experience, to management, to book-keeping – but your potential earnings are limitless.

Depending how much time and effort you put into your new franchise, you could potentially well exceed your initial funding efforts, and start saving away for trips or graduation. Nothing like owning a business to give you a taste of wealth.

And if Dorm Aid isn’t for you – there have been innumerable companies started by college students. There’s nothing wrong with trying out your own entrepreneurial spirit – so long as you aren’t relying on an immediate payoff.

4. Blue Collar

Most students don’t bother to look at certain jobs, thinking it’s ‘beneath’ them or something like that.

First off – what a bunch of malarkey. That’s just an excuse lazy people make up to feel better avoiding work.

Second – some of the best paying jobs are in the service or blue collar sectors. Whether you’re collecting tips as a bartender, or grabbing benefits slinging boxes during the late shift for UPS, not only will you earn good money – you’ll be surprised at the amount of respect accorded your willingness to work. Especially when you enter the job market after graduation.

Remember, before you have your college degree, you aren’t qualified for most ‘prestigious’ jobs. No one ever looked bad paying their dues.

5. Career Related

Oftentimes, in order to get a job related to your hoped-for career, you have to accept a pay cut.

If you’re hurting for immediate cash, this might not be worth it. However, if you can afford to think more about the long-term payout, there’s nothing like getting a placement in a favored department or related business.

You’ll learn how things work from the ground up. You’ll make contacts that may prove quite useful after graduation. And you’ll gain the sort of experience that only can be found through on-the-ground training.

With that sort of a leg up on the competition when you enter today’s tight job market, finding a job on your career path may be the difference between a head start, and a full-on derailment. That’s worth a few bucks today, if you can afford them.

Best regards,

– Scott Weingold

Co-Founder, College Planning Network LLC

Publisher, – The free educational resource of College Planning Network


Related Article:

Students Who Work During College

Return to College Made Simple's Free Reports

Find us on Facebook! Find us on Facebook!

Increase Your SAT Scores Learn How to Increase the SAT Score... By 203 Point or More
Just tell us where to send the full report...
We'll also send you - at no charge - the College Funding Made Simple e-Course, delivered to your email inbox in 12 parts, by topic. With each part, you'll come away with valuable, actionable insights proven to help parents and students in the college admissions and funding process.

NO-SPAM PLEDGE: We believe that your personal information should stay that way. Rest assured, your email address is 100% confidential, and under no circumstance will we ever rent, sell or give away your email address outside of our own network without you specifically requesting us to do so.

Leave a comment
Your comment

Editor's Note: Scott Weingold has been ranked the #1 “College Financial Aid Expert Worth Knowing About” in the entire country by  He has co-authored the book, “The Real Secret To Paying For College. The Insider’s Guide To Sending Your Child To College – Without Spending Your Life’s Savings.” Scott also publishes a popular free online newsletter, “College Funding Made Simple" which reveals insider’s tips, methods, and strategies for beating the high cost of college.

Scott is the co-founder and a principal of the widely renown College Planning Network, LLC – the nation’s largest and most reputable college admissions and financial aid planning firm. CPN is a proud member of the Better Business Bureau, the National Association of College Funding Advisors, the National Association for College Admission Counseling, the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators and the Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education.

Scott, along with his college funding advisory team, helps thousands of families throughout the country with their college planning needs and offers a series of free educational webinars and workshops on “How To Pay For College Without Going Broke In The Process!” He's been featured or mentioned in The Philadelphia Inquirer, Yahoo News,, Voice America with Ron Adams, Crains Cleveland Business, and on Cleveland Connection with James McIntyre.  Scott has published numerous articles and is a professional speaker who has addressed thousands of audiences online and offline throughout the United States.  His actionable insights and candid, open approach have earned him & his team numerous media interviews, citations, and speaking opportunities, and his free online video workshop is one of the Internet’s most widely viewed pieces in the college funding space.