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How to Make Money As a Busy College Student On Your Own Terms

Written by CB Community

You need money to go to college, but it’s almost impossible to hold down a real job and make any money when you get into college.

Even for those who have been able to access financial assistance, there are still many additional expenses that accompany your college years.

Of course, you need the basics of a roof over your head and food on the table, but then there are books, internet access, and a computer, just to name a few necessary costs.

For the majority of college students, juggling a job, a social life, and keeping grades up is almost impossible. Inevitably, you will be scheduled for a shift at the least opportune time and find that no one is willing to cover for you.

Even the best planners struggle to stay focused on their job when they should be studying for a chemistry exam.

We are here to show you some ways to make money as a busy college student on your own terms:

The Pros and Cons of Working on Your Own Terms

Working on your own time has a host of benefits, but it isn’t ideal for everyone. If you freelance, then you need to be self-motivated and a bit of a go-getter.

Rarely are people going to hand you jobs, at least not in the beginning. Below is a quick pros and cons list about working on your own terms:


  • Lack of employee benefits
  • You’ll need to figure out your own tax implications
  • Unpredictable income
  • You might need to juggle a few clients or jobs at once
  • You need to be able to market yourself
  • Initial jobs might be low pay


  • You can work as little or as often, as you like
  • You can make extra money exactly when you need it
  • You can dictate your own schedule, even if this means working in the middle of the night or on weekends
  • Online freelancing work allows you to work from anywhere with a Wi-Fi connection
  • It’s excellent for networking
  • Get varied work experience and exposure to different clients

The Types of Jobs You Can Do On Your Own Time

Have you heard of the gig economy? It is loosely defined as short-term jobs or contracts for freelancers found through digital platforms.

The gig economy is massive and growing at an astounding rate. Unlike many industries which have taken a downturn since the pandemic, freelancers are thriving.

Are you wondering what you can do to get in on the action? There is enormous scope to what can be offered on a freelance basis.

Websites like Upwork and Freelancer are easy to use and dedicated to matching freelancers with jobs.

Other examples of jobs you can do on your own time include:

  • Babysitting – ideal in the evenings when you can study, and kids are asleep
  • Tutoring – online or in-person
  • Completing surveys – there are loads of online survey websites that pay
  • Doing odd jobs – The Credit Donkey recommends everything from dog walking to being a temporary delivery driver


We hope you are inspired to see that there are numerous ways to earn a bit of extra cash and still be able to work on your own terms.

When you get involved in the gig economy, you can work when and how you want.

About the author

CB Community

Passionate members of the College Basics community that include students, essay writers, consultants and beyond. Please note, while community content has passed our editorial guidelines, we do not endorse any product or service contained in these articles which may also include links for which College Basics is compensated.